New York Fashion Week has become one of the year’s biggest digital tentpoles. Brands that once staged private shows now seek to maximize exposure on Snapchat as well as this season’s newest contender, Instagram Stories. Despite its recent launch, Stories seems to have quickly caught up to its ephemeral competitor: L2’s Fall Fashion Week report finds that 57% of brands showcasing at NYFW posted on Stories, while only 53% used Snapchat. However, the study also makes clear that brands leveraged markedly different strategies on the two platforms.

Even though Stories has a similar format to Snapchat, brands tended to adopt a more produced, curated tone on the platform that contrasted sharply with their casual Snapchat voice – echoing their strategy on Instagram’s traditional news feed. For example, Carolina Herrera’s Stories highlighted products and craftsmanship, while the brand’s Snapchat was more improvisatory, depicting the models rehearsing their runway walk.

Snapchat vs. Instagram Stories

Nearly three-quarters of branded NYFW content on Stories was original, with only 27% re-purposed from Snapchat, suggesting that most brands recognize that the two platforms have different audiences. By creating aspirational content for Stories and unfiltered material for Snapchat, successful brands can maximize engagement on both platforms.

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