By now, you have probably heard the news that Instagram added a new feature called Stories, which has a lot of similarities like Snapchat Stories in that the content you post disappears within 24 hours. There are a lot more similarities than differences between these two in which you can read about here.
I will say that when Instagram debuted this new feature, it definitely piqued my interest, but after playing around with it, I was on social media overload. Brands and bloggers initially posted on both platforms (but some are just choosing to use one now) and it was like, “Ahh!!! So much media content to see, not enough time!” It begs the question of when is enough, enough?
This feature debut has seen positive responses for users and Instagram itself (more on that in the next few paragraphs), but there has been a new security concern in regards to privacy through a Chrome extension tool developed my Alec Garcia. The main purpose of the tool is to allow users to watch the Instagram stories on their desktop. Some people quickly pointed out that you are also able to download the users stories and save it forever…basically going against the whole notion that the content will disappear after 24 hours. With Snapchat, people can download third-party apps to save other people’s videos. Main point: the stuff you post on the Internet most likely will be there forever so beware!
Despite the security concern, Instagram stories seem to be appealing more towards marketers every day. Instagram recently announced that they had 300 million daily users, while Snapchat has about 150 million. This easily translates to higher viewership. Take Nike for example. When Instagram Stories debuted, Nike’s first post generated 800K views compared to 66K views for their best video on Snapchat.
Brands have already been curating their images through Instagram in hopes of gaining followers. Snapchat has not been focused as much on brand following, but rather on creating new filters and Snapchat Discovery content. Instagram stories just makes it easier for brands to connect with their fans; however, it is a matter of time before we see even more similarites between the two. The company has confirmed that they are developing a formal ad product for Stories.
One of the biggest things that bothers me about Instagram Stories is the way it is designed to be featured at the top of your feed. For me, I currently follow 850+ accounts and I do NOT have the time to painstakingly scroll left until I see accounts that I like enough to actually watch the video. I wish they can design it to be viewed like Snapchat where you are able to quickly scroll through and “use your time wisely” to watch the videos you want to watch. Maybe later on, Instagram Stories can implement the “best posts first” algorithm as it has done with their normal posts back in March.
With that said, I personally think Instagram Stories is great for brands with amassed followers already or if you are trying to build your brand, but if you’re a normal person with a normal life (that’s me!), maybe Snapchat Stories is still the way to go.
What are your thoughts on these two features? Let me know in the comments below!