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Snapchat vs Instagram & Facebook: Which "Story" is Best for your Brand?

Snapchat is getting nervous.


Shocker: Facebook is coming at Snapchat (yet again) and introducing their own concept of Snapchat Stories.

If you're paying attention to the social media world though, this shouldn't surprise you that much, considering that Facebook-owned Instagram rolled out their own version of the service called Stories in August 2016. Although the public had some hesitation initially with Instagram's new service, it became largely accepted as a way to share things that happen throughout the day for both individuals and businesses. And with 150 million daily users on Instagram Stories alone, it becomes clear who's trying to become the king of the 10-second story trend. (Images: Instagram)

Instagram 3.jpg

Yesterday, Facebook launched Stories -- a nearly identical replica of Instagram & Snapchat Stories -- in Ireland, for both iOS and Android devices. The company announced that it plans to bring the "new format" to more countries in the coming months. So what does it do?

 
 

You can do almost anything you can currently do on Snapchat or Instagram Stories (with the exception of Snapchat's new Groups feature), like using Interactive Filters, replying to people's stories directly, sending stories to individuals, and a lot more. 


"which Platform is best for my brand?"

While there's no hard and fast answer to this one, it's important to figure out what you're trying to achieve here. In most cases, Instagram (+ Facebook) stories will be the better choice for your brand, but there are a few times where you might want to take advantage of Snapchat.

Snapchat: Snapchat Stories have proven difficult in the past from a marketing perspective, because the content you provide is solely limited to a 10 second clip -- nothing else. In addition to that, you can't tag other users, link to a website or product, or add contact info - but most importantly, you have to build your audience from scratch. You have to convince your current fans that you're worth following over at Snapchat, and from what we've seen, that's no easy task.

Plus, Snapchat has no reliable discover algorithm (yet) -- instead, you're matched with those tiles beneath your friend's Snapchat Stories; ultimately, this means 0 people will end up accidentally stumbling upon your Story (unless you're paying for it) and seeing all your content, like they might with Instagram's Explore section.

 
 Image: Instagram

Image: Instagram

 

Instagram + Facebook: The beauty of Instagram (and soon enough, Facebook) Stories is that you DON'T have to rebuild your following from scratch; instead, you can combine the high quality content that you're (hopefully) already posting on Instagram for your target audience, and combine them with your 10 second "Stories" located at the top of the app, and voila - you're set. 

And although we can't speak on how Facebook Stories will perform when they come to North America, we can make some assumptions - based on the stellar metrics that Instagram has been having these past 5 months - and say that Facebook Stories will be a fantastic way to market your brand in 2017. 

If you're more a numbers person, and you're still not convinced that Instagram Stories are better in most areas than Snapchat, check out part of a really well-made infographic from Smart Insights:

 The proof is in the pudding. Nike got 734,000  more views in the FIRST day  they used Instagram stories.

The proof is in the pudding. Nike got 734,000 more views in the FIRST day they used Instagram stories.


"So... should we Rule Out Snapchat completely?"

Not necessarily! In fact, I've seen brands have great success with Snapchat, but not in the way you would think.

Brand Awareness is a very important concept that a lot of entrepreneurs and solopreneurs have been setting aside for quite some time. A question we get a lot is: "How do we build our brand awareness?" There's a lot of ways to do it, but why not let your target audience do the work for you?

Snapchat On-Demand Geofilters are a really great way to get people aware of events going on around your city. Recently, we designed custom Geofilters for select concerts during Chance the Rapper's Magnificent Coloring World Tour, and the fans loved it. It gave them the chance to show their friends that they were at Chance's concert -- but more importantly, for a portion of those that didn't know who Chance the Rapper was, it piqued their interest and caused them to learn more, potentially bringing in new fans.

 
 

Do you have a event happening in your city and want to increase your advertising reach to more people? Design a Snapchat filter! With our filter designs, we were able to reach thousands of people at one time (more than 1,000,000) during the times that our filters were live. Imagine what that could do for your business!


In short, yes - Instagram (and Facebook, when it's released) Stories are more than likely the better choice for building your brand on Social Media, but don't throw away Snapchat just yet! It can be a great tool for business owners and brand strategists to keep in their pockets.

Still don't know which one to use? Send me an email - I'd be happy to help.

Do good today.

Matt Varughese (InstagramTwitter)
Founder + Business Director, @Websterpeace