Facebook continues its relentless chase after the Snapchat users by adding live videos and disappearing messages to Instagram. Starting today, users can start live broadcasting within Instagram Stories. Unlike other popular live-streaming platforms such as Facebook Live and Periscope, which allow users to save live videos for later viewing, the live videos on Instagram will become unavailable as soon as the broadcast ends. Besides live video, Instagram is also adding ephemeral messages to its Direct Messages, which appear in a dedicated horizontal message bar atop the permanent message threads.
This major update comes on the heels of Facebook’s several big moves to copy Snapchat features in the past month, including testing Snapchat-like features in its main app, buying a facial recognition startup that can help it develop smart selfie lenses, and even launching a Snapchat clone in emerging markets. It is safe to say that the social network giant is feeling the heat of the fast-growing messaging app.
What Brands Should Do
Nevertheless, Instagram’s 300 million daily monthly active users still double Snapchat’s user base at the moment. For brands, the addition of live video and ephemeral messages to Instagram opens the door for new types of customer interactions on one of the most popular social platforms. As Facebook continues to court young Millennial audience with Snapchat-inspired features, brands should consider incorporating these new features into their existing social strategies and choose the live-streaming platform that best suits their campaign objectives.