Ephemeral content is short-lived creative that disappears after a certain amount of time. Most major platforms now offer a ‘disappearing’ content format, and with Instagram Stories growing 15x faster than feeds, use is only expected to rise in 2020.
Ephemeral content has already proved to be an effective way of reaching and engaging audiences. According to Facebook IQ data, 62% of people have become more interested in a brand or product after seeing it in Facebook or Instagram Stories – emphasising the format’s power in driving consideration.
With the growing popularity of ephemeral content, suffering feed algorithms and other platform updates such as Instagram’s Like ban, there’s a strong possibility that feed performance will fall further. Brands should prepare for this by getting their 2020 ephemeral content strategies into shape now, protecting their online visibility and avoiding the sting if feed reach does continue to dip.
As well as growing usage, there will undoubtedly be new features added throughout the year. The main updates brands should look out for are Instagram’s ‘Checkout’ feature which (currently in Beta testing) will allow customers to fully complete a purchase without leaving the app. We can also anticipate further advancements in augmented reality (AR) filters which, as of this year, all Instagram users can now create and upload themselves.
With more people spending longer in ephemeral formats (such as Stories), and less time in-feed, clients should assess their social content mix and strategies to make sure they reflect shifting user habits. It’s important that time and effort is invested in the right places to maximise return of investment.
While organic performance is currently strong, as more pages join the ephemeral movement, the space will undoubtedly become more competitive. So clients should also look carefully at their paid strategies and how they are targeting content to reach the right audiences.
From a content perspective there is a new challenge and content that instantly hooks your audience, lands a strong message and invites users to engage is vital. And, thanks to the short-lived nature, publishing at a high frequency – at least daily – is advisable for maximum effect.
Finally, with the promise of some exciting new updates on the horizon for 2020, brands should stay on the pulse of new platform innovations. Being among the first to test new formats is a surefire way to gain recognition, keep consumers excited, and potentially secure stronger ROI; particularly with the impending integration of social commerce, which could be a real game-changer.
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