November 11, 2016
By Joey Wu
It isn’t a secret that Instagram’s parent company, Facebook, has tried purchasing Snapchat for $3 Billion a few years back. Snapchat politely declined their offer.
So what does Instagram do? Release their own version of Snapchat.
Stories is a newer feature that allows Instagram users to document moments of their day via photo or video, share it with their followers without having to upload on their profile, and have those moments disappear after 24 hours. These stories can be personalized with text, emojis, and drawings within the app.
Stories from people you follow will appear at the top of your feed. To view the Stories, simply click on the user's bubble icon and tap through their uploaded moments. Users are also able to advance through different user’s stories by swiping left or right, and pausing the content by placing a finger on the screen. To upload a Story, on your home feed swipe to the right. Instagram also allows users to send messages on the Stories through Instagram Direct. However, that option can be switched off in settings. A neat tool that Stories has incorporated is allowing users to select who the Stories shouldn’t appear to on their followers list.
Stories looks, feels and acts as if it were Snapchat. One noticable feature that Instagram does not have are filters, but have no fear, the filters are coming. Earlier in the year, Facebook announced the acquisition of Masquerade, an image filter app that provides this exact functionality. Our guess is that Instagram users will have filters to look forward to in the near future.
Photo Courtesy of Business Insider.
Here is a side by side comparison of Snapchat and MSQRD filters.
While it might seem like Instagram Stories and Snapchat are similar in every way, there is a huge difference between the two; the use and purpose of these apps.
Snapchat built their brand on being an ephemeral messaging app and that’s exactly how users see and use the app. That’s why their center focus is on messaging. The community of Snapchat is able to send private messages, videos and images; but is also able to upload their content for the world to see as well.
However, the Instagram community is use to something totally different. Instagram was meant for showcasing. Instagram users strive to put their best foot forward in the app, which means spending a ridiculous amount of time finding the best lighting, angle, and filter to apply to their pictures before posting.
Instagram’s new feature will not have a big impact on whether or not Snapchat will lose its user base or see a decrease in revenue. A new study done by YouGov, shows the weekly use of Snapchat Stories still overtake Instagram Stories by roughly 20% in viewing and posting as of August 2016.
Chart Courtesy of Statista.
Because what it comes down to is the fact that both of these platforms attract different types of demographics. Instagram’s largest user group resides between 25-34 years old, while Snapchat’s acquires 18-24 year olds. It will take a lot to change the habits of Snapchat’s core demographic to switch over to Instagram’s Stories.
If Instagram continues down the same path Snapchat has, Instagram will soon be looking to monetize their new feature. A new ad placement might be in the working to be placed in between Stories that users view. Once the filters are launched in the app, there may be a good chance sponsored filters will help Instagram’s revenue increase as well.