I hate calling myself old, but at 42 and just coming back from my 20-year college reunion (Go Marquette WARRIORS!), nearly half my life is gone. I admit it. When it comes to new tech, I do consider myself ahead of the game. I have to be for my career, to be honest. So, when I took a look at Instagram Stories, I immediately laughed because I saw how similar it was to Snapchat. Then I noticed something that only an old man would. It is much easier to use than Snapchat and will be easier to use for businesses because of its direct connection to Facebook.
Stories vs My Story
First of all, Snapchat can be confusing when you first get into it. I didn’t know for months that I could slide for filters. Fine…call me old. Plus, it’s difficult to draw on and then send the Snap. Plus, the whole Snapchat My Story feature, while awesome, takes away from the idea of Snapchat, in my humble opinion. If I wanted everyone to know what I wanted to show them, I would do it on Instagram or Facebook. Snapchat is messaging to a few people something simple, funny, disgusting, definitely-not-public sometimes. While brands are using My Story and doing it well, I can usually get those things on their other platforms.
What Instagram has done is simplified the storytelling process. There are labeled buttons telling you where you are in the process of creating the story. This is great for us old folk! The send button is the send button, not a swipe to the right or left or up. Face it, the interface is just easier with Instagram and it always has been.
But take this a step further if you are a brand. Right now, on Snapchat, you need to beg people to ADD you using other social media channels. Stories on Instagram allows your photos and videos to be sent out to everyone, just like your regular photos. Rather than needing to add friends to your Snapchat portfolio and hope they go to the My Story section and click on your brand’s story, it will appear in the world to everyone. The storytelling can be manipulated perfectly in short photo bursts or videos telling viewers of a “day in the life” or behind the scenes of an event from start to finish.
Not only that, Instagram is already monetized via Facebook. This means brands will be able to, at some point, spread their stories farther. Snapchat has monetized itself…somewhat. Have you tried to spend money on Snapchat? You have that much?
We shall see the battle between Facebook/Instagram and Snapchat only intensify. My money is on Facebook/Instagram when it comes to marketing value.