Despite Facebook and Instagram being fundamentally different platforms, it doesn’t mean they don’t take inspiration from one another.
Live video streaming has become a core part of Facebook’s offering and is proving to be very popular with both big brands and consumers alike. That’s why it didn’t come as that much of a surprise when Instagram rolled out a similar feature in the US towards the end of last year.
Instagram has now made live video available in a host of other countries now, including the UK, Germany, France, Brazil, Canada and Japan, in an attempt to boost the platform’s burgeoning Stories feature.
Now, instead of just being able to add new photos and videos to Stories, users in the countries mentioned above can swipe across into the camera and select the “Start Live Video” option. However, unlike Facebook’s live video offering, Instagram’s is ephemeral and the videos disappear as soon as recording ends.
According to Instagram, the decision to make the videos vanish was taken to make users “feel comfortable sharing what [they] want.” Commenting can also be turned off, which helps to minimise distractions while the live recording is taking place. Users will get a notification whenever someone they follow ‘goes live’.
Instagram will be hoping its live video feature hasn’t arrived too late in the day and will ultimately prove to be popular. Let’s not forget, though, that it’s competing with the likes of Snapchat Live Stories, Meerkat, Periscope, YouNow, Livestream and YouTube Connect, all of which are much more established.
Having said that, Instagram does have a huge advantage in that it’s owned by Facebook.
Live video features on social media are a great way for businesses to be even more intimate with their followers and provide unique insights into their day-to-day operations. Are you utilising them to their fullest?