The day after I posted 10 Reasons I Love Snapchat, the app made a huge update including the use of video calls. It was clear that Snapchat was taking off. And not just for the teens that were the main users. Snapchat seemed to be on the rise and everyone seemed to be jumping on the Snapchat banadwagon.
Instagram, meanwhile, was going through some huge changes. It took away the beloved chronological feed in favor of an algorithm based feed. It also introduced loads of advertising. It seemed to rattle a lot of users, including myself. Not long after I posted Instagram, I'm Just Not That Into You, Instagram introduced Instagram Stories.
Wait, what? Instagram Stories? Instagram just turned tried to turn into Snapchat. This is a great debate in the social media world - Snapchat or Instagram? Did Instagram just Winklevoss twin Snapchat? Just as many were turning to Snapchat (some, reluctantly), Instagram came riding in on a white horse ready to boast many of the same features as Snapchat without needing to download another app. Those who were using Snapchat would not necessarily be wooed over to Instagram, particularly those younger users. However, Instagram likely prevented users from jumping ship to start learning how to use Snapchat.
Now that Instagram Stories has been around a while, and having been a devoted Snapchat user, I've had a chance to use both. As similar as these features are, it is hard for me to pick a favorite. I'm in the midst of a social media identity crisis. So here's my rundown of Snapchat vs. Instagram. If they went to high school together, here's who would win those coveted yearbook awards:
Hands down, Snapchat has this category locked up. With the ever-changing filters, stickers, the silliness can't stop, won't stop. Even the sponsored filters are fun and how often can you say that about advertising? Snapchat has consistently worked on making the app fun and appealing. Now, who wants to swap faces with me? Instagram hasn't really jumped into this aspect of the app which leaves it a little bland.
When you publish to your story, friends will see that at the top of their feed. Plus, Instagram allows for anyone to see your stories as long as you have a public profile. You have a built in audience with all those followers on Instagram. Chances are, you'll have more followers seeing yours stories if you've been on Instagram for a while and new to Snapchat. If your intent is to share snippets of your life with the biggest audience, you'll probably find that Instagram wins.
Instagram saw that Snapchat was providing competition, put a spin on stories and acted like it was its own invention. That's not new. Before the Phhhoto got too big, Instagram released Boomerang. And don't get me wrong, I love Boomerang. It's so much fun and it works hand in hand with Instagram so I never even downloaded Phhhoto. Instagram does have some cool features with stories that Snapchat lacks (pressing the screen to freeze a picture in the frame, tapping on the left side to reverse, etc.) and it seems to be rolling out update after update to compete with Snapchat while not completely becoming Snapchat. Instagram has inspirational quotes posted all over the bathroom mirror and will do anything to win.
At the moment, Snapchat has Geofilters while Instagram lacks this feature. If you are at a huge event or want to dial in to see the action at the Emmy's, Fashion Week, the week's biggest football match-up or a music festival, you can add to it or just watch the story to see the latest, live happenings. Wherever there is a party, Snapchat is there on the scene.
Most Likely to Succeed
Snapchat obviously has been quick to evolve while Instgram seems slower on the uptake. And while Instagram has essentially copied Snapchat stories, it has a bigger piece of the social media pie. I don't know if I could pick a winner between these two of which would be most likely to succeed but I can say that you shouldn't say goodbye just yet to Snapchat. Instagram may have hit Snapchat but it isn't down for the count. Snapchat is scrappy, fun and isn't afraid to try new things.
What are your thoughts? Are you loving the new Instagram stories or are you loyal to Snapchat?