As a public relations student and practitioner in 2018, I automatically feel compelled to say that Instagram is more effective for marketing. People love static images and interactive Instagram stories. Within the past 2-6 years, and exponentially within the past 12 months, Instagram has skyrocketed. Social media influencers have never before had so much power and control. Only a short while ago, it was considered insane to have over 400k+ followers and be a social media influences You had the world at your fingertips. Now, that number is a joke. You can't be taken seriously unless you have 750k+ followers.
At the luxury hospitality public relations firm I intern at, we only will give away hotel stays and experiences to social media influencers who have at least that number of followers specifically on Instagram. And those numbers only get you the minimal amount. If you hit 1.5 million and above, then you can have a week-long vacation in Hawaii. Granted, we d0 write contracts guaranteeing a certain amount of postings - but here's the glitch - we usually only ask for Instagram posts. We usually do not ever ask for Facebook postings.
Instagram has a huge sphere of influence with loyal followers and is an extremely useful way to market your products online. Visual media has allowed for never before seen marketing.
However, my one big caveat is that Instagram is more useful for millennial marketing. Facebook, while it might be slightly outdated, definitely still has a firm grasp on baby boomers and older generations. Facebook is a much more useful platform for marketing to that age range. If you are trying to market a Palm Springs resort for spring break, Instagram would be more useful. If you are marketing a $1,800 Valentino dress at Neiman Marcus, Facebook would be more useful.
By far, Facebook is much easier to tell if the content is sponsored. Especially with the color scheme of Facebook, you can't miss that ugly grey box that says "sponsored" or "ad". Instagram has a more seamless layout which makes it more difficult to tell if something is sponsored. I think that lies as a positive for Instagram and a negative for Facebook. It allows Instagram to get away with more sponsored content, while it hurts Facebook's public image.
Jack Busch, a student in Jon Pfeiffer’s Spring 2018 Media Law class at Pepperdine University, wrote the above essay in response to the following question: Between Facebook and Instagram, which do you think is more effective for marketing and why? Can you tell a post is sponsored more easily on one or the other? If so, do you think that’s a positive or a negative?