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Instagram and Snapchat and TikTok, Oh my!

What are the best social media apps to use to grow your audience? Read my blog to find out!

It is no surprise to anyone when I say that I love social media.

Platforms such as Instagram and Twitter are a large reason why I pursued communications as my field of study in college. The ability to stay connected with your audience and build a brand digitally is something that I’ve always been passionate about and those vast connections would be impossible without the rise of social media powerhouses we use today.

Best of all, these apps allow your everyday Average Joe to have a platform to voice whatever they feel. The creative freedom is practically limitless! Now, everyone has the power to be a “citizen photojournalist,” as Medium.com coined the term in this article. With Instagram Stories feature winning popularity over the original Snapchat, along with the rise of TikTok videos, users wonder what is the best site to post on?

The simple answer is: All of the above!

Each app has its strengths and weaknesses, but since posting to media channels is so easy, with just two clicks, you can post the same or similar content to all platforms, exponentially growing your audience and viewership.

This is my blog, so I’m comfortable sharing my honest opinion. Instagram is the best social media site for anyone – brands, companies, journalists, photographers and even your Great Aunt Sally – to gain media attention and grow a following.

Image result for instagram stories
https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/30/instagram-stories-500-million/
This graph from TechCrunch.com shows the popularity of Instagram Stories over the past few years.

Instagram has over 1 billion active users and very impressive engagement statistics. There is also a wide range of demographics on the app, from children to grandparents. The “gram” introduced Stories a few years back, a feature originally made famous by Snapchat, yet Instagram Stories’ popularity has won people over with a more user-friendly platform and more views per post than a Snap story. The rainbow-colored app allows for photos, videos, and written posts that have stricter community and user guidelines to keep all app users safe. This article from Gizmodo has all the tea.

Of course, many people are quick to criticize media sharing apps who have crossed the line, and rightfully so. It is no doubt that company guidelines have allowed some questionable content through their apps – think of it as quality control. For example, this article from NewssalkZB exposes Rihanna’s feud with Snapchat after the app released an in-app “Would You Rather” poll which insensitively poked fun at her history as a domestic violence victim, asking audiences if they would rather slap the Rihanna, or punch Chris Brown, who was convicted of assaulting the pop-star turned beauty and fashion mogul back in the late 2000s.

Image result for rihanna

After my girl Riri took to Instagram, bashing the app and encouraging her fanbase to delete Snapchat, its parent company lost over $600 million in shares and was not performing well in the stock market. This just goes to show how much influencers actually influence the success of social media apps, confirming that these sites need to be on top of what is being shared under their domain.

TikTok, though realtively new to the world, has become a force to be reckoned with. This platform is very different from the rest, as each post is a video with a time limit of one minute. Some brands and companies have started using TikTok for advertising, but the most compelling factor of this app is that it is mainly for individual creators to showcase their comedy, dancing, art and so much more.

It’s too soon to tell what the future holds for TikTok, but I predict many more companies will start creating regular content for the app due to its growing audience. Even I, an Instagram addict, find myself exiting the world of Instagram to join the fun of TikTok.

By Kassidy Kelly

PR student, new yorker, self-proclaimed shopaholic and apparently I'm a blogger now, too.
CJOR 3422 @ Seton Hall University

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