Young Women Are Still Loyal to Snapchat, Despite the Allure of Instagram Stories

New stats shed light on an emerging rivalry

Snapchat is maintaining its popularity among girls and young adult women. Getty Images
Headshot of Christopher Heine

Some people are saying that Snapchat is losing users to Instagram in droves because of the latter’s eight-month-old Stories feature.

Well, if there is a substantial Snapchat-to-Instagram exodus happening, girls and young women do not seem to be a major part of it, per Episode’s new data. The mobile-minded content network polled 50,070 of its viewers who are mostly females aged between 13 and 25, of which 69 percent said their Snapchat usage has not declined since Instagram Stories went live.

“[It’s] a promising sign that the app’s core Gen Z audience is still engaged and doesn’t seem to be swayed by the surge in users from older audiences,” said Michael Dawson, Episode’s head of studios. “Based on the data we are seeing, young consumers are still keen on Snapchat.”

There’s been a lot of hubbub since Instagram announced last week that it now has 200 million people using its Snapchat-like Stories feature on a daily basis. At first blush, it appears that that feature alone on the Facebook-owned platform is more popular than Snapchat’s app, which has 158 million daily users.

But as Taylor Lorenz, senior editor and director of emerging platforms at The Hill, noted yesterday, comparing Instagram Stories users to Snapchat’s users probably isn’t fair for a few reasons. For one thing, the Instagram Stories user number seems to be an easily misinterpreted figure thanks to that platform’s definition of usage—someone who posts a story or simply clicks on a story.

So, to borrow an example that Lorenz put forth, if Beyoncé posts an Instagram Story on a day, that post—all by itself—is going to attract millions and millions of users thanks to her nearly 100 million fans on the platform.

Meanwhile, daily devotees of Snapchat are likely people who open the app to use it for multiple reasons. The two kinds of metrics aren’t really the same. So it seems wise to pump the brakes on the “Snapchat is dead” narrative.

Meanwhile, here are two other intriguing findings from Episode’s data: Seven percent of respondents stated that they, on a daily basis, send between 50 and 100 snaps (Snapchat’s vernacular for messages), while 9 percent of them send more than 100.

Yeah, those young folks qualify as power users.

@Chris_Heine Christopher Heine is a New York-based editor and writer.