Instagram vs Snapchat: which is best for your business

Does your brand have a ton of visual content? Do you struggle deciding between whether to use Instagram or Snapchat as the tool for sharing that content?

If you answered yes, don’t worry – you’re not alone.

With Snapchat and Instagram both skyrocketing in popularity, it’s hard to decide which platform makes the most sense for your business. 

Both platforms are mobile-driven and have young audiences that use the apps daily.

Below I’ll detail a few key features of each platform to help you can determine the platform that is best for your target audience.

Snapchat:

Snapchat has 100 million daily active users, and over 60% are aged 13-34. The platform is popular among college students.

Worth noting is that engagement is private; it’s not a public chatting tool. You can send snaps to particular individuals, or update them to your story that can be accessed by your followers.

Important things that marketers should note about the platform:

  • Snaps are editable: you can add text and graphics
  • Snaps expire: the photos are viewable for about 10 seconds before “vanishing” from the platform

Since only 1% of businesses are using Snapchat, this serves as a great opportunity for smaller businesses to hop on the platform, start creating content and engaging in order to capture the attention and engagement of their younger audience.

Instagram:

Instagram has over 400 million daily active users, and 53% are aged 18-29 and 29% are 30-49 years old.

Engagement on the platform is public and comes in the form of hearts, comments and reposts.

A few factors that serve to differentiate Instagram from Facebook, and are important for marketers to take note, are:

  • Instagram offers advertisements: these can be created through Facebook’s Business Manager and are a great way to send traffic to your website and/or increase the reach and engagement of your posts.
  • Instagram uses hashtags: these help to boost the visibility of your post.
  • Reposting: Instagram lets you curate and share content, which is a great way to engage with, and feature, your fans.

In summary, both Instagram and Snapchat are powerful tools for businesses to use in their social media marketing strategy.

If your target audience skews young (teens and college kids,) Snapchat is probably a better fit for your business.

If you’re going to use Snapchat, be creative and engaging. Make the images interesting and pay attention to the timing that you’re sending your snaps to be sure they arrive to your audience during ideal hours.

If your target audience skews slightly older (millennials,) Instagram might be the smarter fit.

With Instagram, be sure to use high-quality, beautiful imagery and make use of hashtags! Engaging on the platform with others is a sure way to increase your followers and see your average likes-per-post increase.

Regardless of which you choose, creating a strategy for how to use one of these two visual platforms will be critical to your social media marketing success.

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