The battle for your stories

Snapchat v. Instagram v. Facebook

In the fall of 2013, Snapchat made an addition to their quick pic app that revolutionized both their company and the social media landscape forever – the Snapchat story.

These compilations of ten-second videos and pictures of peoples’ day-to-day lives rapidly stole the show and userbase from the aging Facebook audience. The ability to post a story and it disappear after 24 hours appealed to the younger social media audience. It allowed users to see a nearly live feed of their friends while also feeding into the shrinking attention span of millennials.

This move was so significant that according to Gary Vaynerchuk’s The Snapchat Generation: A Guide to Snapchat’s History, “By August 2014, 40% of 18-year-olds in the US were using Snapchat on a daily basis.”

In 2015 they launched their famous Snapchat filters. That same year they became a media platform, allowing companies to have designated accounts and ads. Today, Snapchat reaches over 7 billion video views each day, rivaling with Facebook.

Facebook and Instagram fight back

In the summer of 2016, Instagram introduced Instagram stories as a means to steal back their younger audience.

While Snapchat is still the leading face of story usage, within the first month of its release, “the new option was already being utilized by more than 100 million people every day. That’s a third of Instagram’s daily active user base, and a fifth of their overall network,” according to Social Media Today.

FB LiveThey took it a step further, introducing and promoting Facebook and Instagram Live, allowing users to give followers a live stream of their activities.

Today, Facebook recently introduced Facebook Stories to different audiences across Europe, hoping to gradually bring the stories to the United States users.

According to Pew Research Center, Facebook is still the leading social media site both nationwide and globally. However, their desire to win back the younger generation is shown in the new additions of Instagram stories and Facebook Live. Snapchat is a threat, and Facebook must continue in the fight for stories in order to stay on top.

What stories mean for PR

As for public relations, this battle for users reemphasizes the need to know your audience and understand which people are using which platforms. Snapchat’s success and Facebook’s newest additions show that millennials, especially teenagers, are using the platforms dedicated to quick, visual messages.

When forming content aimed at a younger generation, PR practitioners must find a way to incorporate this style of messaging into their social media strategy and integrated marketing campaigns.

It could be buying a filter on Snapchat for a new company promotion, or a well-known spokesperson going live on the company’s Facebook account to talk about an issue. Either way, the stories sent out on social media must be visually appealing, authentic and constantly updated.

More Information

For more information, visit the links below.

Utilizing Social Media as a Soon-To-Be Grad

We live in a social {media} world…

Growing up in the digital age, most millennials have never known a life without the constant connection that social media sites provide. It is practically second nature to chat with friends via Snapchat, post pictures on Facebook and keep up-to-date on Twitter.

However, social media sites can be significantly more useful than the casual posts many college students use it for regularly. It can help soon-to-be grads land jobs and make meaningful connections. Here are some tips to ensure you are utilizing social media to its fullest as a soon-to-be graduate.

Demonstrate Your Knowledge

Every graduate’s social media handle is a digital representation of their brand as a future professional. When beginning to look for jobs, soon-to-be grads should take the opportunity to demonstrate their industry knowledge on their social media handles. Start discussions on industry news. Write a blog post about experiences in an internship.

Digital PictureAccording to The Huffington Post’s Social Media Etiquette for College Students and Young Professionals, “Like it or not, your communication becomes a strong part of your overall image. Recognize this as an opportunity to set yourself apart as a person with integrity.”

When employers begin to research applicants, they will see a potential employee both actively sharing their knowledge and wanting to grow.

Keep It Clean

Many college students think of their social media accounts as a way to connect with friends and tend to not have clean and appropriate posts.

However, as stated before, any social media account is a digital representation of your brand as a professional. When applicants have compromising pictures and posts, it is often an immediate issue for employers. Although Facebook and Instagram posts might not be on your professional accounts, if it is published online with your name, it is a representation of you professionally.

Social Media and College GradsAs far as privacy settings go, employers have ways get around them. According to, “A full 69% of employers admit to rejecting an applicant after checking them out on Facebook or another social media site; the reasons given for rejection range from inappropriate photographs and posts to misrepresentation of background or abilities.”

These conflicts can be avoided by simply not posting anything questionable. If you do not want an employer to see it, do not post it. It is always best to put your best foot forward.

The Gold Mine – LinkedIn

LinkedIn PictureConnections are vital in landing any job, especially the first job out of school. The best social media site to network on? LinkedIn.

While LinkedIn is a social media site, its focus is on connecting professionals to make them more productive and successful. Therefore, your LinkedIn profile should be a digital representation of your resume and portfolio material.

Beyond profiles, LinkedIn has job listings and groups that college students should research or join in order to make connections. Also, HR departments and recruiters often use LinkedIn as a way to meet new applicants. Reach out to these individuals because it never hurts to make connections and grow your network.

For more information on utilizing LinkedIn, visits 4 Ways to Find Job Opportunities on LinkedIn.

Universities’ Need for Social Media Marketing

If you give a school a Snapchat…snapchat-1374859_960_720

In order to increase student discussion and brand recognition, universities across the nation are broadening their horizons by incorporating social media marketing into their communication plans.

However, these universities are learning that their need for strong social media marketing goes beyond the classic Facebook and Twitter account activity. In order to have a strong social media presence, university communicators must tap into new social media sites to increase intercommunication with students.

Recently, colleges have begun using Snapchat, allowing university communicators to reach their students in a quick and entertaining fashion. According to Mashable, “more than three-quarters of college students — 77%, in fact — use Snapchat at least once per day.” Therefore, a key way to reach their target audience is utilizing Snapchat stories and filters.

A prime example of a university communicating with their students over Snapchat is the University of Florida’s President W. Kent Fuchs Snapchat Takeover. During his takeover, President Fuchs takes his followers through daily presidential responsibilities, interacts with students and attends campus events.

Why is UF’s Snapchat Takeover important?

There are two main takeaways from the UF Snapchat Takeover.

First, not only is this a creative way to communicate with students, the president’s usage of Snapchat shows that he values communication with his students and key stakeholders.

PR is most efficient when it works hand-in-hand with an executive team and that is seen here. President Fuchs not only shows his ability to adapt to constantly changing trends such as Snapchat, he makes it clear that the students at the University of Florida are important to him.

Second, when communicating with key audiences over social media, university communicators have to keep the information up-to-date and fluid.

While pre-scheduling programs such as Hootsuite are very helpful and should be utilized in managing tweets and Facebook posts, people should not depend on them solely to communicate. PR professionals should get out of the office, utilize Snapchat or Facebook Live and provide their audience with live, authentic material.

Tips for universities using social media

Tip 1 – The more the merrier: College campuses should not limit themselves to one social media outlet. According to Forbes’s The Top 10 Benefits of Social Media Marketing, “Every opportunity you have to syndicate your content and increase your visibility is valuable. Your social media networks are just new channels for your brand’s voice and content.” Individual colleges, schools and even on-campus organizations should utilize social media marketing.

Tip 2 – Stay on brand: Be sure that all content put on social media and sent out with the university’s name is on brand. Create a styleguide for campus communicators that outlines brand graphics and written material shared on social media. For an example, check out Auburn University’s Styleguide.

Tip 3It’s all about the students: Sharing personal stories of students and their success is vital for any university social media handle. This not only attracts future students, it increases intercommunication with students because they can connect personally with the stories.

More Information

For more information on Social Media Marketing, visit Forbes Top 10 Benefits of Social Media Marketing.