Move aside, Snapchat; Facebook Stories is here. With the introduction of this new feature, Mark Zuckerberg has essentially declared war on Snapchat in a bid to win users. This is not an unforeseen event- the Snapchat-esque feature had already been tested for months and even used on other owned social media apps like Instagram, Whatsapp, and Messenger.
It very much functions the same way as it has been on Instagram and Messenger- your friends’ Stories appearing in a row of bubbles at the top of the screen, with an opportunity to view and respond. Your stories comprise of a combination of pictures and videos before expiring after 24 hours. To rival Snapchat’s ‘lenses’, the in-app Facebook Camera offers users the limitless tools to be creative with their pictures.
Who doesn’t want baby Groot standing on your shoulder?!
This new ‘toy’ seems prime to offer stiff competition to Snapchat, with better filters that are easy to navigate and play with. While the dog filter in Snapchat is creatively fun, Facebook’s filters include popular icons of old and present such as Ridley Scott’s famed Alien, Rocket Raccoon & Groot, as well as the adorable Minion. Even as a neutral observer of this filter craze, it was admittedly fun to put on a Raccoon mask or see what it was like to have big, round Minion eyes.
This move has not been Mark Zuckerberg’s first attempt at battling Snapchat, and certainly not the last. Facebook Poke was the first jab at the rival, initially becoming popular among users before flopping out after a month. This was after Facebook attempted to acquire Snapchat but was turned down by CEO Evan Spiegel. Since then, Facebook has made calculated moves to iron out the ghost logo- by imitating it and rendering it irrelevant.
Marketing strategy aside, this is a classic example of progressing with the times and making changes that would appeal to the masses. Just as mankind evolved from text messaging to visual images, the trend is heading towards moving pictures aka videos today, which Mark Zuckerberg seems to agree. The ball is now in Snapchat’s court to respond to this offence; what will they do to keep users hooked to their app?
From a digital media standpoint, this development essentially highlights the need for brands to stay new and fresh among users. No other app could offer the same uniqueness as Snapchat three years ago- now there are four. It is a ruthless world out there where competitors resort to imitating one’s success and if you do not evolve, you may soon find yourself losing out. As a media agency, we see these as common moves by brands to outdo their competitors, and as such advise clients never to be content in present success but to continue growing.
Image Source: https://goo.gl/a1SJwT
It will be interesting to see how this plays out in the future- will Snapchat hold the fort or be another victim of Facebook’s media conquest? Seeing how unpredictable the media world is, we at Marketing Connection constantly keep ahead by pushing the envelope and coming up with new ideas that will keep you ahead of the game. Just as Facebook and Snapchat are evolving, so we encourage you to do the same, and we can help make that happen.
*Marketing Connection is a digital marketing company that specializes in website design and online marketing in Penang. We love to help new businesses to grow their business further.