Influencer Marketing is currently one of the most important marketing strategies on social media. Snapchat and Instagram are the most-used platforms for Influencer Marketing. Still, Instagram is in many ways a better fit than Snapchat. Find out why your brand should focus on Instagram Stories for successful Influencer Marketing.
A few weeks ago, we already highlighted the general differences of Instagram Stories and Snapchat Stories and came to the conclusion that Instagram’s version of the format is a better fit for brands than Snapchat’s variation. This is due to multiple reasons, starting from the audience of the different platforms, the characteristics of the formats and the possibilities it offers for brands. Regarding the options the different formats offer for brands, one highly important factor is Influencer Marketing. By definition, Influencer Marketing uses specific individuals, who are believed to have influence on the target group, to promote specific products or the brand as a whole. Brands and companies usually either pay influencers or give them their products for free as an exchange for their positive and consistent promotion of the products. This can include just images featuring the products, blog posts, video stories or other variations of product placement appropriate for the chosen platform.
Influencer Marketing is a frequently used form of marketing on Instagram, as the photo-sharing app offers perfect conditions to promote and highlight specific products. Snapchat on the other hand was also often used for Influencer Marketing, as the formerly exclusive Stories-format allowed influencers to address their followers on more personal level, which was often perceived as more “real”. Now that Instagram has introduced their own Stories format, Influencer Marketing on the platform has changed a lot. In most cases, Instagram’s Stories format and the integrated functions allow for more effective Influencer Marketing. Starting with the basics, Instagram’s number of daily active users is twice as high as Snapchat’s: 300 million users are active on Instagram each day, while only 150 million are active on Snapchat. This allows for a way larger audience on Instagram.
Username mentions for Instagram Stories
One thing that is especially helpful for successful Influencer Marketing is Instagram’s new feature for Stories regarding username mentions. Instagram users can now mention other users in their Stories and their usernames will be underlined. The important thing about this is that others who watch the story can click the mentioned username and will be forwarded to the mentioned account. Regarding Influencer Marketing this is a very helpful feature, as influencers can easily mention the brands and business they are cooperating with and offer a quick way to guide their followers to the connected accounts. This way, influencers can introduce the products and directly forward their followers to the company itself, allowing maximum influence and significance of their promotions.
Snapchat lacks this feature; influencers can showcase their products but cannot directly forward their followers to the brand’s account. In case followers want to find out more about the product or see further images, they would have to search for the account themselves. The significance of Snapchat Stories for product promotion is therefore a lot lower than on Instagram. Additionally, searching for accounts is a lot harder on Snapchat than on Instagram. Snapchat requires the exact username of snapcode, otherwise users won’t find the right account. Instagram on the other hand lets you search for accounts via username, brandname, hashtag and will show the right result even if you misspelled the name.
Clickable links on Instagram, remembering links on Snapchat
As Influencer Marketing is all about product promotion, forwarding followers to landing pages likes online shops or websites is highly important and in fact necessary. Shortly after they introduced their Stories format, Instagram included the function to lead users on to external websites. Users can click these links and will directly be forwarded to the external website. This feature enables even more successful promotion for products and makes Influencer Marketing on Instagram a very powerful tool. Snapchat on the other hand does not allow the inclusion of clickable external links. Influencers can include links in written form but their followers will either have to memorize or screenshot the link, so they can search for it themselves afterwards. This is way more complicated and minimizes the actual influence of product promotion on Snapchat Stories.
Regarding the general layout and functionalities of the platforms, Instagram seems more intuitive and offers a variety of functions whereas Snapchat in the field of Influencer Marketing is limited to the Stories that lack important features as mentioned above. Instagram Stories are an addition to the regular feed. This way, the app incorporates two ways of communicating with audiences which allows more diverse and widespread content-sharing. Influencers can share polished highlights in the regular feed and can complement these through their more real and personal Stories. As Instagram now offers these two possibilities, the question is how long Snapchat will maintain influence and how many influencers will stick to Instagram where they already have best of both apps. This is a question that can only be answered after a longer period of time. Still, the possibilities of Instagram Stories definitely pave the ground for better Influencer Marketing on Instagram than on Snapchat.