As Social Media professionals, we have always been fascinated by the intense competition between Snapchat and Instagram. Which is the better app? For a while, it was a close match, until last year when Instagram launched a near identical version of one of Snapchat’s main features: Stories. It was GAME OVER.
And that was just the beginning. Over the course of this past year, Instagram has added more seamless face filters, location tags, stickers and superior drawing tools. Snapchat just couldn’t keep up.
The Winner: Instagram Stories
In the past year, the number of Instagram Stories users has completely exploded to a whopping 250 million users, far outpacing Snapchat’s 173 million users. To add insult to injury, more marketers have said that they prefer Instagram Stories rather than Snapchat. Following this change, social media influencers have also seized their support of Snapchat in favor of Instagram where they can connect with their fans in an authentic and unpolished way.
Over the past six months, MediaKix conducted a survey to confirm if Instagram Stories was beating Snapchat among top social media influencers and the results are officially in. Influencers shared TWICE as many stories on Instagram as they did on Snapchat. Snapchat also saw a 33% decline in use among influencers. On a daily basis, influencers post 7.6 times on Instagram stories, but only 3.5 times per day on Snapchat. Out of 12 well-known influencers, 11 prefer using Instagram stories rather than Snapchat.
Think about it from a business standpoint. You’re already on Instagram for your company. Would you personally want to log into another app to feature your content as a story, or would you want to keep it all in one place?
The best part about Instagram Stories is how they appear right at the top of your home screen in a colored rim indicating it has not been watched. As soon as your followers open the app, they see YOUR story before going anywhere else and it entices me to open them before scrolling through their feed. You’re catching their attention and remaining at the top of their mind the more you update this feature.
Snapchat fans probably don't want to hear it, but the reality is that Instagram is doing most of the things Snapchat does — and doing them better. Plus, Instagram was already running an entirely separate and successful enterprise before Snapchat even came along! Anything else Instagram adds now is purely an extra advantage layered on top of its already massively successful app.
Instagram overall has a more sophisticated, forward-thinking design and user experience but at the end of the day, the proof of a successful app and its features is a basic one: How often is it being used? The numbers just don’t lie. With Instagram Stories having 250 million daily users compared to Snapchat’s 173 million as mentioned above, Instagram’s usage per day beats the “more than 30 minutes per day” of usage Snapchat claims on average now, as well as the over 30 minutes per day for under 25s and 20 minutes per day for over 25s Snap cited in its IPO filing.
Unless Snap can pull some new tricks out of it’s bag (and fast) and show a promising increase in growth when it reports earnings later this quarter, it may see Wall Street sour on its future the same way it did with Twitter. Time will only tell, but the one thing you can count on is Instagram Stories continuing to rise.
In a world where innovations are constantly being created and society is always changing, it is important to stay ahead of the wave before you are submerged by an overwhelming force of your competition passing by you and stealing customers. It is critical to have a clear vision of what the future will be like in order to get ahead of your competition and stay ahead.
If your company isn’t leveraging from Instagram Stories already, you HAVE to make it an integral part of your 2018 marketing strategy. If you haven't given any thought to your business goals for the new year, do yourself a favor and set aside just 30 minutes to hop on a FREE strategy call with us to discuss how to successfully market your company in 2018.