In a blatant attempt at catch-up to rival Snapchat, Instagram announces new “Stories” feature. Stories allows Instagram users to broadcast photos and videos to their followers in a less permanent way. Posts disappear after 24 hours, and you have the ability to add text or draw on your photos. Sound familiar? It’s like having Snapchat built right into your Instagram app now – except without all of the fun facial recognition filters.
The benefit of Stories is that these posts won’t show up in your profile view; so, now you don’t have to worry about a random funny pic cluttering up your carefully curated gallery. Stories posts won’t actually show up in your followers’ newsfeeds either. In a clever use of limited space, Stories posts live in a separate horizontal feed right above your regular newsfeed. If all of this sounds complicated, it’s not. The user interface for Stories is pretty easy to figure out, and it’s remarkable how Instagram was able to cram another full-sized feature into the existing app’s real estate.
The rollout has already begun for Stories. If you haven’t seen this new feature yet, you probably will soon. This is a strategic move by Instagram to keep users from navigating away from their app, and it’ll certainly make things easier for users – keeping all of their photo sharing in one place. This is also great news for businesses that are already using Instagram effectively for marketing, as users will spend even more time on the app. The Stories feature in itself likely won’t be a game-changer for businesses, as posts disappear in 24 hours and the goal for business posts is to maximize engagement. Still, we’ll keep an eye on this and any other new feature that comes along, looking for ways to increase your digital footprint and connect you with your audience.
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