Ever since the launch of Instagram Stories back in August, Snapchat has been the one to suffer the most. It was reported that there is a 15 to 40% decrease on Snapchat Stories views and 43% of the users will delete the app if Instagram introduces filters. Below are some of the reasons why Snapchat is losing views and ways on what they can do to bounce back, gain more audience, and remain as the number one story-sharing platform.
Why is Snapchat losing?
There are several factors that give Instagram an advantage in this story-sharing battle. First, let’s compare the user mechanism on Instagram and Snapchat. There are more than 600 million monthly active users on Instagram compared to Snapchat’s 60 million. Also, the platform has more prominent features compared to Snapchat’s with its content-sharing features. This way, users have the possibility to become viral and be discovered by other important figures on Instagram.
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Snapchat, on the other hand, have a much more complicated mechanism. To see someone’s story, you must add them first, either through their usernames or the scannable Snapchat code. If you don’t know someone’s username or their code, viewing their story is impossible. Instagram allows you to browse through one’s feed before you can decide if they’re worthy for a follow.
Next, the disposal of Snapchat’s Auto Advance plays. The update allows you to select which stories you want to see without any automatic playbacks. Snapchat claims the reason behind this update is because “we just want to see what our close friends or family are up to – not all of our friends – and Auto Advance prevented that.” Initially, this was a great update because the numbers of organic views can increase since users are not accidentally viewing a story due to the Auto Advance feature. However, unless you’re DJ Khaled or Kim Kardashian, not all your followers will want to view your stories every day. In fact, what was once a great idea turned into one of the reasons why Snapchat is going through a downfall. The update caused a 10% drop among their clients, stated marketing company, Mish Guru.
Lastly, Instagram is often used for business and promotional purposes. To be able to grow as an influencer or a company, users need to especially focus on online marketing. Influencers use Instagram to get endorsements and promote products to their followers. In a sense, they are able to reach a certain group of audience that they can’t find on Snapchat. Well-known figures, whether they’re A-list celebrities or social media influencers, already have an established fan base on Instagram with millions of followers each. Compared to posting stories on Snapchat, where they’re experiencing a 15 to 30% drop on views, Instagram provides a reach that Snapchat can’t give them. Instagram “plugs” into your existing Instagram account so you can see stories from people you already followed and vice versa.
What can Snapchat do?
To come out of this battle unscathed, there are a number of ways Snapchat can improve to maintain, and gain, audience. First and foremost, Snapchat’s priority should be on understanding their audience. Millennials and Generation Z makes up 30% of American Snapchat users and 45% of their total users goes under the 18-24 age range.
Maintaining customer loyalty from Millennials and Generation Z can be tough. Still, there are four ways Snapchat can cater to this demographic by creating more dialogue, establishing authenticity, increase philanthropic endeavors, and enhance user experience.
Generation Z are an innovative kind; they’re constantly looking for ways to interact and communicate with brands. In fact, 60% of millennials would be loyal to a brand if there is an easy way to communicate with the developers when they’ve encountered a problem. UGC, or User-Generated Content, can allow Snapchat Millennial users to control their own experience. They would want to be involved in the creation and improvement of the platform. In a way, UGC has been implemented on Snapchat for a while through the Geo-filter and Events feature. Users can create their own Geo-filters and submit snaps for the chance to be featured during a specific event (New Year’s Eve, Valentine’s Day, Halloween, etc). Yet, there are more things Snapchat can do to improve dialogue between them and the users.