It’s only been a few months since Instagram rolled out its Snapchat-esque Stories feature, but in the world of social media, that’s an eternity. Instagram Stories have since infiltrated most of our social media habits to the point where Stories are no longer a novelty that many were quick to call unoriginal and a cheap ripoff of Snapchat’s ephemeral concepts and design. They’re just a regular ol’ part of using Instagram now.
But how does Instagram Stories compare to the original product? Has Instagram innovated upon Snapchat’s flagship philosophy with its expansive network and audience tools, or does Snapchat remain the superior product? Blasters Anaïs and Jackie put on their debate caps and duked it out.
Both Instagram and Snapchat stories provide users with geofilters, temperature as well as stickers and emojis. Great but also, not my jam.Instagram stories give me a way to personalize my images without looking too overdone or processed – i.e. NOT a junkyard for filters.
A few of my fan-favorite features exclusively on Instagram stories are:
- Boomerang. For those of you who are unfamiliar, this is a burst of photos captured that play forward and backward. This is normally used for my walks to work or showcasing my boyfriend eating ice cream.
- Mentions. Users can actually @mention and link out to an account within the Instagram story, because why wouldn’t I want the world to know exactly which coffee shop I’m spending over $5 for an Americano.
- Hands-free. The tool for that moment when holding down a button to record a video can be a little too much. Instagram stories offer a way to hit play and capture a video without the extra effort.
- Live Video. While most of my stories are somewhat planned and published, there are times when real-time footage has its benefits, ahem behind net at a Flyers game. Similar to Facebook Live, users can connect with their followers live and once they’re done, the story disappears.
- See More links. While this is in a testing phase, verified users can link out to full web pages and blog posts with a simple swipe up. Why is this important? When I’m following a blogger or retailer I can swipe up to learn more instead of plugging a URL into my web browser.
OK, this one is no contest in my opinion. Though I’ve gotta admit the linking and mentioning features that come with IG stories are pretty darn cool and have an element of sophistication to em, they just can’t touch the pure joy and hours of entertainment that Snapchat lenses bring to my life.
For those of you who may be unfamiliar with Snapchat, aka over the age of 35, all you have to do is hold down on your face on the camera screen and voila, a plethora of ever-changing, silly personas are at your fingertips. I mean where would we be without the bee filter? The infamous dog ears? Or my personal favorite, the adorable rainbow vomit face? And that’s not even the end of Snapchat’s enticing features.
The geofilters and wider range of stickers only add to Snapchat stories superiority over Facebo—whoops, I mean Instagram—stories. Each of Snapchat’s gimmicks brings a wide range of personality to your social storytelling. And the overall lower quality/jankiness of the platform brings an element of grit and honesty to the Snapchat that you just can’t find anywhere else. All I have to say is, this is me now.
Some things are only appropriate for Snapchat. I mean, its original claim to fame came as a tool for college kids to send nudes, so naturally, the content I put up on my Snap story is much different than the carefully filtered and captioned stuff that goes on Instagram.
There’s something innately casual about the platform that makes me feel OK about using it to document the trivialities of my day-to-day life, without worrying about how it impacts the professional or general public facing segments of my brand. I rarely have to second guess the content I post (though I probably should more often). Also, Snapchat is the OG ephemeral photo sharing platform and I’m totally the ride or die type.
Wouldn’t dare post this on Instagram. But now it’s on our company blog so… ¯_(ツ)_/¯
Instagram is an outlet I use to brand myself, and share what I’m doing through an artistic outlet. Photos in my Instagram feed are curated and include specific placements, pops of color and a whole lot of food. Instagram stories provide me with an extension of my personal Instagram brand in a spur-of-the-moment fashion. And pro tip: I don’t need to switch back and forth between apps anymore.
What I post on Instagram stories is for the public eye. The whole reason I’m posting is for people to see it. I mean after this election, do we actually believe anything is private? So for me, I’m going with the platform that gets me higher results.
When posting the same photo to both platforms’ story feature, my views are 25 percent higher on Instagram stories. Meaning, my audience is active and alive on Instagram and Snapchat, not so much.
Here’s why: With Instagram Stories, your audience already exists from your Instagram account along with its parent company, Facebook, you get a wider reach and scale of audience. Something that is next to impossible with Snapchat. The crossover to add someone on Snapchat is just too high of a barrier.
While the consolidation argument holds weight, I firmly believe that choosing to post your story on Snapchat over Instagram has benefits. As previously mentioned, I post a lot of weird stuff on Snapchat that I don’t necessarily need my wider social following to be privy to!
Privacy is important.
Because discoverability is more difficult on Snapchat, I take an immense amount of comfort in knowing my story will only be viewed by either the people who know me well enough to add my account via phone number or the people who I’ve actually been in close enough proximity to that they’ve scanned my snapcode. (One of my other favorite Snapchat features which you should check out if you haven’t already! Future shit.). In a world where Facebook essentially owns my soul, I’m holding on to this last sliver of “privacy” for dear life.
Well, what do you think? Are you more inclined to gravitate toward Instagram Stories, or does Snapchat still hold a special place in your heart? Let us know in the comments or weigh in on Twitter.