After what feels like a year of resistance, I’ve finally accepted Snapchat into my phone. For the uninitiated, Snapchat is a photo & video messaging platform where content can live for a maximum of 24 hours before it’s gone forever. After I downloaded it, I received sporadic messages from friends, and was generally confused about its utility, even as (younger) friends tried to convince me that it was great for positing silly photos and keeping your friends updated on your life. That description wasn’t enough for me to see a difference between my daily ridiculousness on Twitter and other platforms, but then inspiration struck. I’d found a fun, innovative way to use it for one of my clients (note: you should totally follow us at eloquii – we’re hilarious!) and I needed to start experimenting with content creation on my own.
(real Snapchat content that I shared. seriously)
Thanks to a couple of friends who were willing to send me rapid fire responses to the silly videos I sent, I started to find my way. As I look back at how I’ve used the platform over the past month, I’m surprised at how free I’ve allowed myself to become. I’ll post photos and send videos first thing in the morning or at 1am when my eyeliner is on my cheeks. In contrast, Instagram is a platform where I’ve struggled to find a real home. I want to be silly, share moments from my day, and products that I’m loving, but even my most successful photos pale in comparison to the highly stylized and curated feeds of my friends. This isn’t the “comparison Olympics” as my friend Carletta aptly calls it, but an honest assessment of my abilities.
(my dinner one night. i know you’re fascinated)
What I’ve come to love most about Snapchat is how uninhibited, unafraid, and unashamed I feel about the content that I share. I would love to say the same for Instagram, but my need to craft the “brand” that I present to the world overrides all that. The fact that there’s no follower counts, no website, no Google crawler indexing my every move feels revolutionary. It doesn’t bother me when a friend takes a screenshot – quite the opposite actually. I’m flattered that I shared a moment they wanted to capture. I’m never worried if my lipstick is perfect, or if my product shelves show in the background. Even though I feel like I’m my genuine self on every platform I use, I’m always presenting a polished product. While I won’t apologize for putting my best foot forward online, I relieved to find a new outlet for…everything else.
I don’t find myself scrutinizing over every detail of my look, or my surroundings. How much can someone notice in 10 seconds? The focus is on the content, not the quality, and it’s utterly refreshing. Maybe everything doesn’t need to live forever. The next 10 seconds will do just fine.
*and if you truly feel the need to know what I ate for dinner, what I passed on the sidewalk, or my mood for the day, follow me at sarahbconley.