With Facebook and Instagram’s outpour of Snapchat copycat features, it would seem that Snap Inc. doesn’t stand a chance as a dominant social media network. Additionally, after the company’s Q1 2017 earnings report came out lower than expected, the network’s future looks bleak.
Previously, one could argue that Snapchat is unique from the rest because of its video snippets that disappear after 24 hours. However, Instagram has since incorporated an identical feature, increasing its following drastically.
Although a battle was lost, the war is far from over for Snapchat. According to fourth quarter data collected by App Annie, an app data firm, 35% of Snapchat’s U.S. users were not reachable on Facebook on a given day, and 46% were unreachable on Instagram.
The most distinguishing characteristic Snapchat maintains that other social networks have yet to mimic (and likely won’t) is the inability to share content or form a profile identity. While Instagram and Facebook are more advertiser-friendly, Snapchat has a more casual, real-time element that younger users tend to prefer.
When deciding which network would prove more profitable, markets and advertisers need to consider the following factors:
Is the market targeting an audience drawn to pop culture and social norms (Instagram), or an audience that revels in the spontaneous and silly moments (Snapchat)?
What does the company want to accomplish? A more informal and less-polished relationship with users (Snapchat), or increased exposure through shares and likes (Instagram)?
What is the overall desired image of the company? Relaxed and casual (Snapchat), or more crafted and aspirational (Instagram)?
Which do you prefer: Snapchat or Instagram? Let us know in the comments section below.