Instagram Stories… Did They Copy Snapchat?

Stephen HarveyInstagram, SnapchatLeave a Comment

Instagram Stories versus Snapchat Stories

The latest social media platform to make a huge impact on the digital landscape is Snapchat. We posted an article recently talking about whether or not to use Snapchat for your business. People are using the storytelling functionality of the platform to engage with customers and clients in a deeper fashion by conveying a rich story. It makes sense to reach people of a higher level!

So, where there is greatness comes copying and this situation is no different. Another powerhouse social media platform decided to pursue the storytelling aspect and add a new element to how it performs. Welcome Instagram (child of Facebook) and their new storytelling feature that they hope will rival Snapchat and their success.

I really liked what a colleague had to say about the news. He said in a comment to a Facebook post talking about Instagram taking on Snapchat stories…

Instagram Stories vs Snapchat comment

He makes a good, snarky point because Facebook in the past hasn’t really built on it’s strong platform. But, instead has opted to build out separate apps for different uses. Facebook Messenger is the perfect example of this app build out.

Yes! Instagram Copied Snapchat

The tech industry is known for it’s flattering methods of innovation via copying. It is actually one of the many things that are great about technology and how it progresses. People take a good idea and try to improve on it. This method has been in place since the dawn of time… seeing what works well and then improving that concept. Those tactics won’t cease and they shouldn’t.

In a recent Techcrunch article, the interviewer mentioned to Instagram’s CEO Kevin Systrom that much of, if not all, the technology and tactics around the new Instagram Stories mimicked almost exactly what Snapchat currently does with its platform. He said, “Totally, they deserve all the credit.” It was relieving to hear a C-level executive own the question and not try to dance around with a lot of excuses. Systrom had a great point by saying, “This is about a format, and how you take it to a network and put your own spin on it.” And he backed that up with how the Facebook News feed was copied by almost all the other major social media platforms and now each has specific purpose to those on the different platforms. He’s correct in that the industry copies what is good and improves on it.

So how does Instagram’s new Stories feature stack up against Snapchat? Well, they are pretty much the same spitting image of one another. Here are four ways that Instagram Stories act the same as Snapchat Stories:

  1. All the cool text and drawing tools are at your fingertips
  2. Photos and videos disappear after 24 hours
  3. Stories from followed accounts appear at the top
  4. Privacy and flexibility are a big deal here too

An added positive here is that if a business is using Snapchat to connect with customers and clients, then the same techniques can be experimented with on Instagram. The results should be similar, but will need to be analysed to see if both digital ecosystems yield the same results from the unique user bases. All great data to track and monitor to see where to put social media efforts for the business.

Take what’s been learned from engaging with people on Snapchat and apply it to Instagram’s Stories. If Snapchat has been off the digital marketing radar, then it is time to take a deep look at the platform because it’s functionality will start popping up on other social media too. Instagram won’t be the only player in the game that goes down the Stories path. Know how they work and leverage the functionality to tell rich stories about the business and keep customers engaged. Engaged customers tend to buy products and services.

Do you plan to implement Stories into the digital marketing at your business? Have you already jumped onboard with Stories and are seeing good results? Let us know in the comments below. And, as always, feel free to contact LTM Digital to get help with Snapchat and Instagram Stories or anything social media.

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