Before we start, let’s address the elephant in the room. What is ephemeral? It is defined as ‘lasting for a short time’, basically, a fancy buzz word for temporary.
We know that it has great success in engaging people, but are brands able to employ it in their marketing strategy? We will delve into short-lived content in detail, looking at the basics, statistics, and recommendations to help you decide whether your brand needs to invest more in this type of content.
What is Ephemeral Content?
It is a form of media that is available for a temporary period of time. Snapchat, Fleets, Insta & FB stories are examples of these, lasting only 24 hours. Due to its short-term nature, it taps into your fear of missing out (FOMO) emotions and usually requests a quick response from the audience.
Why use Ephemeral Content?
Before you dismiss this type of content, assess the positive contribution that it will bring to your brand. Connecting with your audience is important to keep a happy, loyal customer, social media has facilitated this connection. Here are some advantages of using ephemeral content:
- It organically boosts your engagement by ranking your feed high on followers who engage with your stories.
- It Humanizes your brand which leads to a connection.
- Usually, it requires quick action from the user such as to purchase a product or sign up for an event. Knowing that the content will disappear will tap into the urgency of taking an action which leads to higher engagement.
- Ephemeral content is usually user-generated and gives a chance for your audience to get to know you, this will boost brand loyalty.
- You are able to tap into a wider reach by utilizing certain hashtags/geotagging.
- It has the ability to build trust
- A more immediate Lead generation/conversion
- Can be more interactive and engaging to your audience (polls, swipe up, Q’s)
- Makes you more authentic.
The Stats on Ephemeral Content
The social media landscape is ever-changing, short-lived content has gained popularity and your brand needs to consider tapping into this media form with a solid strategy. Check out some powerful statistics in this form of content sharing.
Snapchat is the pioneer of temporary content, it is the first social media platform to start this type of content. Currently with 238 million users and 4 billion snaps a day. The app is opened on average 30 times a day, with an age demographic of 18-24. Due to its success, other social media platforms have followed suit.
With 1 billion users, 500 million use stories every day. Although the platform launched in 2010, insta stories introduced a clone of Snapchat in 2016.. Snapchat audience is below 34, Instagram made it acceptable and available for all ages. Instagram is continuously changed and upgrading features. Time spent on Instagram increased with the introduction of Insta Stories, the jump from 15 to 32 minutes each day is significant enough to highlight the importance of this content. So if you’re still not utilizing ephemeral content, you should start crafting a strategy ASAP.
Facebook Page stories
If you are not already aware, Facebook owns Instagram and you are able to cross-posts. Facebook has 2.6 billion monthly. Facebook Page Stories was launched in 2017. A ⅓ of its users are on stories, which is roughly 500 million active users. Some businesses quickly bought advertising space on stories realizing the critical importance of exposure to their brands.
Fleets rolled out in 2020, but reviews have been mixed. It seems like it’s still in beta testing so too early to have any solid statistics but with 330 million active Twitter users, it shouldn’t be ignored.
Launched in 2020 however, it is still not fully operational. Clubhouse in some ways is ephemeral in nature. It’s an audio-chat app with no saved conversations. As of March 2021, it has 10 million active users. .
The Do’s of Ephemeral Content
- Because this medium feels more ‘real’ to your audience, it is important to highlight who you really are, your authentic self, whether it’s the brand culture or the product. Your audience is seeking to connect and want to feel that your message resonates with them.
- Each message should have a purpose, be concise and clear.
- Storytelling is an effective way to highlight your authenticity.
- Consistency is key, set a target of how often you want to appear on stories and stick to it. Some platforms give an algorithm boost for using new features, to play it to your advantage.
- Using ‘Behind the scenes’ content will improve transparency and thus loyalty.
- Make it engaging! There is a more intimate feel when your customer can interact with your brand, so don’t be afraid to use polls, questions,
Brands that have not yet taken to ephemeral content should consider incorporating it into their marketing strategy to connect with their target audience, boost engagement, and drive sales. It’s a trending social media phenomena that must be leveraged. No matter what type of business you have, level up with short-lived content.