It seems as if the world has gone crazy with storytelling these days, and social media stories are hugely becoming a fundamental component of social media activity. As a PR agency, consumer-wise, we have noticed there is no getting away from this phenomena of social media interaction.
With the likes of Snapchat, Facebook Stories, Facebook Live, Twitter Moments, Instagram Stories, Instagram Live and now WhatsApp Stories it seems nearly the majority of social platforms are heavily invested into this new way of life. These platforms are encouraging us all to build narratives online and connect on a deeper level with friends, customers and connections.
What does this mean for PR & Marketing?
Influencers and their influence
Bloggers, Vloggers and social media personalities are in love with social media, so within the fields of PR and Marketing we need to be prepared to accept that there’s value in the area of social media stories. Take Instagram stories for example; Beauty blogger Jackie Aina once said “The one thing that I can definitely say I enjoy about Instagram Stories is that I can directly tag people and link to websites.” This tells us that brands can gain from being tagged in a story, thus providing another avenue to increase in followers and traffic to websites.
You’ve got 24hours to go!
Even though an Instagram story for example, disappears 24 hours after being posted, it can still be great exposure for a brand, product, project or event mention. In many ways Instagram stories, Instagram live or Facebook stories and Facebook Live could be viewed very similar to getting a feature on television or live TV. Thousands and in several cases, millions of followers view influencer Instagram stories daily. According to Forbes, Facebook, who own Instagram, states that Instagram alone has over 700 million monthly active users across the world. 200 million people are using Instagram Stories every day and 160 million daily use Snapchat. Instagram Stories in particular seems to be flourishing and has high open rates. Influencers are seeing an average of 6-10% of their followers open their Instagram Stories on a daily basis, which according to Facebook is an incredibly high engagement rate.
Tune in or Miss Out
Again, just like live TV, there’s nothing more exciting than seeing an event unfold live as it happens. For launches and major events having a live video or visual commentary on social media can also be an added advantage and a very useful engagement tool. It could be argued that, thousands of people watch stories online because of curiosity, consequently influencers and brands have yet another way of interacting with their followers. With a story on Instagram for example, there is an urge to catch the story the minute you see that red circle before it disappears in 24hours – getting the feeling that you are in the know, and not the one left behind.
But at the end of the day….
The regular timelines / feeds on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram are always the backbone of the social media platform and remains the primary place where people keep up to date. With the expansion of video stories and live footage on social media perhaps this might change. Who knows whether or not there might be a shift in a couple of years to come? Nevertheless this means that we may need to constantly adjust our approach to social media, think about how we market campaign, capture coverage, promote news, projects and highlight events.