Give your brand's social engagement a boost with Instagram's Vanish Mode

Geri Mileva
Geri Mileva

As business owners and marketers, we use various marketing tactics to drive consumers through the sales funnel and increase conversions and sales. Posting targeted messages on social platforms like Instagram helps ensure we stay top of mind across our target market. The photo- and video-sharing app has 127.2 million U.S.-based account holders, outranking the number of TikTok and Snapchat users in America, with a majority (71%) of the country's users being 18 to 29 years old. Moreover, the U.S. is second to India among the world's top nations with the largest IG audiences.

But how can you motivate leads and clients to complete a specific purchase, subscription, or service deal amid a hyper-competitive business landscape filled with countless options? When your revenue growth needs to pick up some speed, incorporating self-erasing social messages, which are activated through Vanish Mode on IG, in your marketing strategy can provoke urgency and promote exclusivity that will prompt your social followers to action. Keep reading to discover how this Instagram feature can make your brand stand out

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Give your brand's social engagement a boost with Instagram's Vanish Mode
Table of Contents:

    What is Vanish Mode on Instagram?

    Instagram’s Vanish Mode feature lets you send a message—text, image, or video—that disappears when you leave your chat or you turn off the feature. The feature is active when your screen turns dark and the phrase "Vanish Mode" appears on top.

    You can only send vanishing messages for one-on-one conversations, not group chats.

    How Can I Use Vanish Mode to Promote My Brand?

    You can leverage the temporary nature of disappearing messages to match your time-limited offers. At the same time, this approach can serve as an effective personalization tool as you customize the message’s content based on where the recipient is in the customer journey.

    Send an image or video on the chat to make your vanishing message more impactful. You can follow it up with a text message asking whether the person caught sight of your earlier message. Add a brief recap of that message, then tell them to watch out for your next chat on Vanish Mode to discover what else you have in store for them.

    Why not try chatting in Vanish Mode for the following?

    ·       Exclusive product giveaway or promo

    ·       New product sneak peek

    ·       Event announcement (sale, new store opening, webinar)

    ·       Vlog preview

    ·       Introduction of influencers joining your brand community

    How Do You Turn On Vanish Mode on Instagram in 2023?

    You can activate Vanish Mode in two ways. Here are the short and long methods of enabling this feature.

    Short method:

    1.     Tap the IG messaging icon and select the person you wish to send a disappearing message to.

    2.     Once you're in the chat, swipe up without lifting your finger off the screen until you see these messages appear successively at the bottom of your screen: "Swipe up to turn on Vanish Mode" and "Release to turn on Vanish Mode."


    Long method:

    1.     After clicking the IG messaging icon and choosing which contact to send a message to in Vanish Mode, tap on the person’s account name in the chat.

    2.     Click "Privacy and safety" once their profile appears on your screen.

    3.     When a new window opens, you'll find Vanish Mode listed below "Keeping your messages secure." You can toggle on the button beside it to enable the feature.

    How Do I Turn Off Vanish Mode on IG?

    You can also deactivate Vanish Mode in two ways:

    Short method: Swipe up inside the chat until the message "Release to turn off Vanish Mode" appears. The feature becomes inactive once you tap and release. Your screen will also return to bright mode.

    Long method: Tap on your contact's account name to open a new window showing their profile. From there, click "Privacy and safety" and toggle off Vanish mode from the new window that appears.

    Can Someone See If You Turn on Vanish Mode on Instagram?

    Yes. IG will send a notification to your contact when you send them a message on Vanish Mode. The recipient must tap on the notification to view your message.

    Can You Recover Vanish Mode Messages on Instagram?

    No. You can't copy, save, or forward messages sent on Vanish Mode either. However, you can take a screenshot or screen recording of your chats before they disappear.

    Why Do My Messages Keep Disappearing on Instagram?

    The disappearance of your Instagram direct messages may be due to the following reasons:

    ·       You've been blocked. You can verify that someone has blocked you by searching their username on Instagram. If you can't see their posts or follower numbers, that person has blocked you off their contacts list.

    ·       Your contact deactivated their account.

    ·       Your contact unsent their message.

    ·       You may have inadvertently turned on Vanish Mode.

    ·       You're experiencing an Instagram glitch. Try restarting your phone, delete the app, and download it again. You can also ask fellow users if they’re experiencing a similar problem.

    ·       Sometimes, the platform's servers are down. Wait until Instagram's systems return to normal.

    Does iPhone Have Vanish Mode on Instagram?

    Yes. Instagram's Vanish Mode works on both Android and iOS phones. Ensure that you've installed the latest version of the app.

    Does Vanish Mode Delete Messages on Both Sides?

    Yes. When one of the users exits the conversation while Vanish Mode is still on, the seen or viewed messages will disappear. Unlike unsending messages on the platform, Instagram won't leave any indicators for messages that disappear in Vanish Mode.


    Use BIGVU to Create and Share Videos for Auto-Deleting Messages

    When using Instagram’s Vanish Mode to inform your customers about new products, services, or events, you can give your message an extra oomph with BIGVU. To deliver your spiel with confidence and clarity:

    1.     Use BIGVU's AI Scriptwriter to write a video sales pitch.

    2.     Use the Teleprompter to sound natural while reading the script. (web|mobile)

    3.     Create a video landing page with BIGVU and a matching thumbnail. (web| mobile)

    4.     Pique your prospect's interest with an engaging video and thumbnail sent in the DM.

    Other Messaging Platforms with a "Self-Deleting" Message Feature

    Besides Instagram, here are a few other messaging apps from which you can send disappearing messages for your next marketing campaign:

    1.     Snapchat

    Snapchat is a forerunner in offering messages that disappear once viewed. The ephemeral Snaps feature appealed the most to young and spontaneous digital natives.

    Similarities with Instagram: Settings are available for this self-erasing feature. Snapchatters can toggle "Keep Snaps in Chat" on or off under Chat settings.

    Capabilities unique to Snapchat/Limitations: Unless you change the settings, Snapchat servers automatically delete one-on-one and group Snaps in 24 hours once they get viewed. Unopened one-on-one Snaps self-delete after 31 days, while unopened Group Snaps automatically disappear after seven days.

    The advantage of Snapchat over Instagram is that you can send disappearing messages to groups. Also, Snapchatters can save messages on their device via long press.

    In our opinion, Snap’s longer “expiry date” is suitable for some promotional activities, and its group-sending capability is a plus. For instance, you may design a contest wherein your identified recipients can claim a prize or join a raffle before a Snap disappears from their app. Besides that, Instagram’s Vanishing Mode still wins for the surprise factor.

    2.     Facebook Messenger

    You must activate Messenger's Secret Conversation feature to create a self-deleting message.

    Similarities with Instagram: You can activate this Messenger feature in two ways. You can toggle on the padlock button after clicking the new message icon. Or you can tap the "i" (information) button at the top-right corner of your chosen chat and click "Go to secret conversation." Either way, Messenger creates a separate chat for this secret conversation.


    Capabilities unique to Messenger/Limitations: You can set how long the message stays visible. On your chosen chat, tap the info icon to launch a new window containing the "Disappearing messages" option. Once you click this feature, another pane opens with the “timer” options—from five seconds to one day.

    The main drawback of this Messenger feature is that it clutters your inbox because a Secret Conversation appears as a new chat thread. If you fail to set the timer for your first message, the new thread will stay in your inbox, giving you two threads for one person.

    3.     WhatsApp

    WhatsApp has two types of self-erasing messages: "Disappearing messages" and "View Once" messages.

    Similarities with Instagram: Like one of Instagram's Vanish Mode activation options, you must tap the chat where you want to send a self-deleting message and click your contact's name. In the new window that opens, click "Disappearing messages." The app will then ask you to choose from three message "timers."


    Capabilities unique to WhatsApp/Limitations: Disappearing messages can stay on a WhatsApp chat for 24 hours, seven days, or 90 days. This feature is also accessible for WhatsApp group chats. Also, WhatsApp has a View Once feature that allows images and videos to self-delete once the recipient views them or exits the media viewer.

    You can "save" a message before it disappears by making a long press and choosing the "Keep" or bookmark icon among the options. However, in a group chat, the admin can tap "Unkeep" on a message to prevent others from saving it.

    WhatsApp’s View Once feature gives users a “save” option that Instagram doesn’t offer, making the former a top rival of the latter’s Vanishing Mode. However, new WhatsApp users may lose their first few “View Once” messages if they’re still unaware of the “Keep” button.

    4.     Telegram

    In Telegram, users can create a disappearing message using the "Secret Chat" feature.

    Similarities with Instagram: Telegram's "Secret Chat" only works for one-on-one conversations.


    Capabilities unique to Telegram/Limitations: Like in Messenger, you can activate this feature by clicking on the pencil or new message icon and selecting "Start Secret Chat" from the options. Then, tap on the contact you want to send a secret chat to. You can attach a photo or video and set the timer (between one second to one week). The other method is to pick a chat thread and click on your contact's account name to open their profile. From the three-dot menu icon on top, tap "Start Secret Chat."

    Because Telegram’s Secret Chats are session and device-specific, your recipient may not get the chance to read your secret message if they switch phones or log out of their device. Its timer options are not as extensive as WhatsApp’s or Snapchat’s. However, the secret chat adds another thread to your inbox, like Messenger.


    Use Vanish Mode for FOMO-Free Engagement

    Businesses have long employed the fear of missing out (FOMO) to compel consumers to action. Although the tech-savvy public has become wiser with social media use to avoid digital fatigue, you can still send high-converting messaging through disappearing messages. With the help of analytics, you can determine which of your customer segments are most receptive to these vanishing messages and develop a campaign tailor-fitted to that part of your audience.

    And because your chat can enjoy a "clean up" thanks to Vanish Mode, customers can speak well of your brand's new de-cluttering tactic on social media.

    Sign up now to use BIGVU for free and test Vanish Mode on Instagram and other messaging apps!