Stories are on track to become the main format for social media consumption, providing brands with a massive and vital opportunity to reach consumers.
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg claims the format will supplant News Feed use as soon as mid-2019, a much quicker pace than the social network anticipated. Combined, Stories features on Facebook-owned platforms command a whopping 1.5 billion daily active users (DAU), though some may be double-counted.
Snapchat’s audience is significantly smaller, though still sizable at 190 million DAU as of Q1 2019. Stories-centric features have also emerged on several other platforms, including YouTube, Google search results, and even LinkedIn.
The viral acceptance of Stories, their accelerating usage, and their highly engaging nature make it imperative for brands to use the format to reach consumers. This fast-growing opportunity will enable brands to reach consumers in a native format that’s immersive and highly appealing to younger demographics.
But because Stories are a completely new animal for brands — most are still playing catch-up to consumer adoption — they must follow best practices to make sure to avoid aggravating users through overexposure, or wasting resources by creating Stories that users don’t want to watch.
In The Stories Report, Business Insider Intelligence identifies the most popular platforms for Stories features, defines best practices to maximize engagement without alienating users, and pinpoints challenges hindering brand adoption for the future.
The companies mentioned in this report are: Facebook, Google, Instagram, LinkedIn, Messenger, Snapchat, WhatsApp, and YouTube.
Here are some of the key takeaways from the report:
- Millennial users are more likely to watch Stories on Instagram (60%) than Snapchat (53%) and Facebook (48%), according to VidMob.
- Gen Z — comprised mainly of teens — favors Snapchat for watching Stories. Teens are heavy viewers of Stories, and 73% of Snapchat’s Gen Z audience consume content via Stories, compared with 70% of Instagram’s and 34% of Facebook’s, per VidMob.
- Brands looking to build successful Stories campaigns and make meaningful connections with customers should shoot vertical content that’s uncluttered and post no more than seven Stories within a 24-hour period, among other best practices.
In full, the report:
- Provides insight into which platforms brands should prioritize based on their target audience segments.
- Offers an inside look into marketers’ best practices for Stories creation.
- Explores the hurdles the industry will need to clear so brands can take full advantage of the format.
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