It made news this week when Twitter asked Instagram users to post images directly to Twitter instead of posting a link to the photo on Instagram. When an image is posted on Instagram, the user can choose to send a link to the image to Twitter. An image from Instagram will show up on Facebook when shared there, but Facebook owns Instagram.
Yesterday I heard an interesting talk from Meagan Rhodes (@MeaganNRhodes) about using social media. (She’s worth following on Twitter if you’re interested in social media for your business.) She talked about how millennials are all on Instagram. She’s a young woman herself (at least when compared with me) and much more in touch with what millennials are doing with social media.
I personally don’t mind clicking through from Twitter to see a photo on Instagram, although Meagan said most younger people won’t click. But Twitter wants the original image to be put on Twitter and for the link to Instagram to go away.
There are more active users on Instagram now than there are on Twitter. That’s a big change. There are some reasons for this.
- Instagram is all visual. The world is rapidly becoming all visual.
- Instagram allows more than 140 characters.
- Instagram allows a number of hastags in each post. And additional hashtags can be added later in a comment on your own photo.
- Comments on Instagram photos are directly under the photo and don’t require searching back through different threads on Twitter. That means any hashtags associated with photo are right there on the page with the photo.
- The Instagram accounts of people who visit and comment on your photo are right there and easy to Follow.
When you list some of the reasons for Instagram’s heavy use by millennials, it becomes clear why Instagram is taking the lead over Twitter and winning the lottery for eyeballs.
It would be good for Twitter if users took their advice and actually posted their photos directly on Twitter. But how would it benefit anyone’s brand, traffic, or image sharing from the Instagram side of things? It would not.
A while back I wrote about adding Instagram photos to your own blog. Everything I said in that post still applies for two reasons. It your blog. It’s not a link to a photo as with Twitter.