In 2011, Snapchat launched & quickly became popular among teens & young adults for sending quick photos and videos to friends with little care for the content – as they are automatically deleted just seconds after the recipient opens it. After the introduction of Snapchat Stories in 2013, a way of publicly posting a ‘snap’ for 24 hours, a whole new space opened for individuals & businesses to offer a more personal experience to their followers.

Fast forward into 2017, Snapchat is still a huge player on the social media scene & it’s got some big competition from Facebook, who have launched simular ‘stories’ features on Instagram, Messenger, WhatsApp & now on Facebook itself.  For Facebook, it’s been an all-out effort to halt the momentum of Snapchat to ensure their dominance in an era where visual communication has become a primary mode of communication.

With ephemeral stories being offered on what seems almost every social media platform now, we are going to have a look at the two most popular platforms & how you can use them to engage with your customers.

Snapchat & Instagram stories offer an easier going, honest, and quick engagement between businesses & their customers. Leaving followers feeling closer with their most loved brands. Both are important to a business’s social media presence—one platform isn’t better than another. Although they are similar in how they work, they are different depending on who your customers are. The key to developing a successful strategy is understanding who your customers are and the message you are trying to get across as a business.

If you are targeting a younger demographic, you should defiantly be exploring how to utilise Snapchat to engage with your customers. It’s popular with teens, with the number of 18-24 year old users double that than the number of 25-34 year olds. Snapchat is a valuable tool for businesses with a young personality. Instagram boasts a much larger user base & it’s Stories feature has 200 million viewers per day, more than Snapchat has total daily users. While Instagram is still heavily used by 18-24 year olds, it has the advantage of appealing to an older demographic also (In Australia, 21% of 30-39 year olds use Instagram, Only 7% use Snapchat). Both platforms tends to work well with quirky & creative businesses who want to give their followers a glimpse behind the scenes and generally put a face to the business. So how exactly can you add stories to your digital marketing strategy?

You can use stories to provide exclusive content to your audience that they might not receive on other digital platforms. Certain brands have used Snapchat & Instagram stories to debut products & collections to followers before they are announced anywhere else. You can provide a behind-the-scenes feel to your followers, which helps create a strong bond. Allowing your followers to be a part of your brands day to day activities will lead to them feeling like they are closer & sometimes part of the brand. The casual feel of both platforms allows you to post content in a more care free manner compared to other social networks, that meaning there really is no limit to what you can add to your stories. Some ideas include –

  • Product manufacturing
  • Photo shoots
  • A day in the life of… your business, a staff member, a customer etc.
  • Behind the scenes at events
  • Takeovers by celebrity endorsers
  • Quick daily overviews by staff members
  • Staff birthdays in the office
  • Friday drinks or company outings
  • Push incentives & exclusive competitions
  • Show Your Product in Action

 

Using the stories feature on either platform shows that you’re business isn’t only knowledgeable about new social media trends, but you’re also open & down to earth enough to apply them. If you’re intrigued by Instagram & Snapchat Stories but unsure how you use this feature in a creative way that will interest your audience, you should start following similar businesses & see how your competitors are utilising the features. Also feel free to speak to your Volcano Digital Account Manager to discuss ideas & create a personalised strategy for your business.