Instagram or Snapchat: Which is Better for Your Business?

/ July 5, 2019 | 6 Mins Read

Instagram or Snapchat: Which is Better for Your Business?

Wholly, Instagram and Snapchat attract 687 million daily active users. Since both platforms progressively coincide in features, function, and in promoting components, it gets hard to differentiate the unique elements that make one a better fit for your business to reach your target demographic.

Digital presence is vital for any company or brand. Today, if your business is not online, little to no people will know about it. Marketers all over the world work on expanding the presence of companies and their visibility to customers. Social media channels offer unlimited opportunities for unconventional business promotion. They are the best way to build long-lasting relationships with your customers in 2019.

Instagram and Snapchat are two of the most popular photo and video sharing platforms. They are useful channels if you want to promote your products or services, attract new customers, and eventually expand business operations and increase profit margins.

1. Instagram vs. Snapchat: Main Differences and Similarities

So, which social media channel is better for your business? Some might follow the so-called easy way and choose to be present on both. However, spreading your efforts thin may not always be good for your marketing plan and budget. In this case, you need to know the pros and cons of Instagram and Snapchat to choose one of them based on their peculiar features.

Why You Need to Consider Instagram: Main Statistics

As Instagram is slightly older than its competitor, it makes sense to start with this platform.

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This social media network was launched in 2010 and quickly managed to gain a leading position among similar solutions. In 2018 there were more than a billion monthly users. These numbers are really impressive as you can promote your business to all of them. Each day 500+ million users are active on Instagram.

Statista states that a whopping 71% of the whole userbase are people under the age of 35. Instagram is the most popular among users aged 25-34 and 18-24. Today, it is difficult to find young people who are not on the platform.

What is more important for marketers, is high density of businesses. Almost 71% of businesses in the USA are already present on Instagram. The popularity of this platform among brands can be easily explained. Almost 70% of users look up brands on Instagram and 80% of users are following their favorite brands.

The Most Prominent Pros and Cons of Instagram

The advantages Instagram offers to marketers are numerous. It helps reach a huge audience on a single platform, show the behind-the-scenes life of your company, and increase sales and revenue. Here is what Instagram is ready to provide you with:

  • When comparing two platforms, Instagram is more mature and has a broader user base. It increases your chances to get in touch with your target audience which is really interested in products or services you sell.
  • You can easily create a business account which grants access to the Instagram analytics tools, allows promoting posts as ads, include links in stories, and even pre-schedule your posts.
  • When you use advertising tools, all your ads can be catered to the needs of specific audiences and be based on your budget.
  • Shoppable posts have changed Instagram in the eyes of marketers once and for all. You can create product posts and add their price, description, and even the “Shop Now” option. When users select this option, they are redirected to your store where they can make purchases. This hugely increases conversion rates and decreases bounce rates.
  • Instagram welcomes creative posts, be it photos, videos, or stories.

The picture of Instagram would not be full without mentioning its downsides. They should not be perceived as something purely negative, as they are just some system features that impose restrictions on your activities.

  • Just like any other social media platform today Instagram has strict Terms of Use. Study the materials before launching your company account on the platform to avoid unexpected problems in the future as some types of businesses are not allowed to market their brands on Instagram.
  • Instagram users are quite young – under the age of 35. Are your products targeted at this audience or are they designed for more mature people? Your answer to this question determines whether you should consider this platform or maybe it would be more beneficial for you to choose another one.
  • When you market your business on Instagram, you need to keep up with all algorithms as the platform is constantly changing them. If something works now, it may not work in the future. It is quite challenging to build marketing strategies for long periods of time.

Main Reasons for Choosing Snapchat: Some Statistics

Snapchat is a little bit younger than its opponent and has a smaller audience. The number of daily active users in 2019 is 190 million and the number of monthly users exceeds 300 million. Still, the platform offers great opportunities for marketers who seek out new ways of promotion.

Snapchat is a young platform for young users. In the USA alone almost 90% of all 13-24 year-olds and 75% of 13-34 year-olds are active on this social media channel. Almost 45% of users are aged between 18 and 24, and these numbers often become a key factor when contemplating the use of Snapchat.

Snap Ads have a high level of watch rate. Almost 60% of all the time users watch them they do so with the sound turned on. Companies see this as a huge advantage and by 2020 their investment in such ads will reach $767 billion. And you should really consider becoming one of them.

Pros and Cons of Snapchat That Influence Decision-Making

When you consider Snapchat, remember the following benefits it can offer you:

  • Depending on the angle you look at it, the no-feed nature of Snapchat can be perceived both as an advantage and disadvantage. You don’t need to dedicate a lot of time to creating great content and organizing it into an attractive feed.

  • As snaps disappear after 24 hours from being posted, they are a great way of letting your customers take a look at the behind-the-scenes moments of your company.

  • Snaps are also great for promoting limited offers, special products, and discounts. They usually attract users’ attention and help to build and broaden your audience of devoted customers.

  • Snapchat is a favorite platform of Generation Z. You ideal customers should be under the age of 25 so that your promotions and all operations on Snapchat can bring results.

Here are also a few downsides you need to know about before starting business promotion on Snapchat:

  • The most distinguishing feature of Snapchat is its ephemeral nature. It makes users to constantly create new content. As your snaps disappear within a predefined time period, you need to make posting a part of your daily routine.
  • A smaller user base is another thing that might be seen as a turn-down factor. However, if your target audience is on Snapchat, it will not matter to you.
  • Don’t forget about the demographics of Snapchat. Your target customers should be on the platform for you to consider it as a possible channel for promotion. If they are not, it is better to look at other platforms that are available and popular in the region of your operations.

2. Instagram vs. Snapchat: Main Secrets of Making the Right Decision

When you know all the peculiar features of each platform, it is time to make your decision. But how not to make a mistake that would cost you time and money? Here are a few questions you need to know answers to:

Who is your audience?

As mentioned earlier, knowing your ideal customers is vital for any business. Without this data, marketers cannot devise a successful and high-performance marketing strategy.

Which platform do your buyers prefer?

You need to market your products where your buyers are. Do they prefer Instagram or Snapchat? In some cases, the audience may be divided between the two platforms so it is reasonable to be present on both of them.

What type of content will you create?

As Instagram and Snapchat are two leading platforms for photos and videos, you need to decide which type of content works best with your audience. Maybe you will need to create only photos, or maybe photos, videos, and stories combined together will bring you the best result. You will not know without trying.

Public account or closed community?

Which is your choice? It is especially important to know when you deal with Instagram and Snapchat, as they are quite different in nature. The first one makes your account more accessible to anyone while the latter is great to build and support relationships with a closed community of the most loyal customers.

3. Instagram vs Snapchat: Which is the Winner?

The battle between Instagram and Snapchat is never-ending as both platforms are great for the purposes they were created for.

You need to know your audience, resources, budget, products, and business model to choose the right one for you. You can either start with one platform or test both to find out how they would align with your goals and needs.

Either way, Instagram and Snapchat are two of the most prominent social media networks of today with the multibillion user base. They are more than worth the time and effort you are going to invest in them.

Maria Redka is a Technology Writer at MLSDev , a web and mobile app development company. She has been writing content professionally for more than 3 years. Maria researches the IT industry and the app development market to create educative content for the company's clients and build MLSDev as a brand. The opportunity to share her knowledge with people who are looking for valuable information to understand more about app development is something that motivates Maria and inspires her to create more quality content.

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