How to rock disappearing status updates

Disappearing status updates are the new thing to do over on Facebook and Instagram. Even Whatsapp makes sure they stand out. We give you some tips on how to use the disappearing status update on all three social networks.

Why you should do disappearing acts

First made popular by the Snapchat app, disappearing status messages are all about instant emotions—what you’re feeling, seeing or experiencing—expressed through a combination of pictures, videos, GIFs and illustrations, with a 24-hour expiry time. Social networks such as Facebook and Instagram highlight such status updates to make them stand out from the regular ones that you see on your timeline. Messaging platform WhatsApp has a dedicated column in the app, while Instagram and Facebook show the Stories updates in the row along the top, highlighted with a red circle around profile pictures. Using it means your profile becomes top-of-recall on someone’s timeline. It is perhaps a good way of gaining followers.

Tell a story

It could be the story of how your day is going, where you are working, what you’re attending, seeing, eating, or just anything funny. The best status messages push users to see more updates. Play with posts to tell a story about something. Pictures or videos of a concert or sports event, behind-the-scenes at a party, tutorials on a skill set you know best, or a series of genuine personal questions to which your followers can respond privately.

Have some fun

There’s a reason why disappearing status messages offer mixed media. Experiment with everything, be it time-lapse videos, Boomerang loop videos, collages, live shots, images with text or images with icons. Make the disappearing status your experimental ground. Show your creativity, and people might engage more with your main timeline.

Use all the bells and whistles

To decorate your photo, simply load it in the status update within the app to scribble or draw. The Facebook app uses the in-app camera to add more creative filters, lenses and visual geolocation tags while Instagram offers Boomerang videos to experiment with. Try all filters and play around.

Learn from others

How are the people you follow using these status updates? Click on one of the profiles on the top of your feed on Instagram or head to Status on WhatsApp to see what people post. All Status updates auto-play once you open one but you can fast-forward through them by tapping a photo to look at other updates of the same user or swipe right to see the next user’s status. Follow Nasa (@nasa) or National Geographic (@natgeo) on Instagram to see the amazing twists they use to tell a short story on astronomers taking a trip or a day at the zoo, through multiple status updates.

Keep experimenting

Be dorky, nerdy, funny, awkward, see what works for your audience and what doesn’t…

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