It is shocking to me that the Snapchat app has been around since 2011. To me, it still seems like a buzzed about app that just recently started gathering steam. According to Snapchat, there are over 100 million daily active users and about 9 thousand snaps shared each second, and 10 billion videos viewed per day. So, I guess Snapchat has already arrived.
What is Snapchat?
Basically, Snapchat is an app that allows smartphone users to send a video or photo that will delete within seconds. The intended viewer will not be able to see the video or photo again. Of course, that is not entirely true. Some sneaky people have figured out how to screen capture what has been sent so that they can keep it for as long as they want, but that is another story altogether.
If you are considering using the app for your business as an advertising or marketing tool, start with a Snapchat sign-up to familiarize yourself with how it works. Create an account, follow other people and observe how the app is being used by both users and brands alike.
Snapchat comes across as a teen app with little application for marketing or advertising because of the short shelf-life of the image or video. Smart brands have used this short lifespan to their advantage by creating Snapchat advertising that allows consumers to preview their product or service. Basically using it as a teaser campaign.
There is also straight-out Snapchat advertising that you can purchase, just like most other apps. The ads are integrated into the application with a 10-second video with the options to swipe up to reveal more content. The ads are intended to look natural by appearing as Snapchat says, “in the context of other snaps” and uses the same functionality of swiping as other snaps.
You can also sponsor lenses (filters) which are a fun and playful way to interact with consumers. Or, you can sponsor a Geofilter. These Geofilters allow Snapchatters to see your filter and apply it to their image/video to explain where they are, what time they were there, and why.
Here is an example of the Gatorade filter created for the Super Bowl.
— Gatorade (@Gatorade) February 8, 2016
Marketers can also use Snapchat for other means that just advertising. Snapchat marketing can entail contests, branding through interacting with current and potential consumers, influencer and content marketing.
You might be wondering how you can use Snapchat for a contest. One way is to use the social media platform to engage people in real-time. Similar to how a radio station has a call in to win, you can deploy a get the info from our snap to win. You can also offer promotional codes and discounts.
Snapchat does allow brands to capture user-generated content so that they can interact with their consumers. This helps the brand to run contests asking for users to send in content with their product or otherwise.
Some brands have used Snapchat for influencer marketing. By asking an influencer to take over the brand’s account for a day or a week. This influencer reaches out to their demographic to both boost the brand’s followers and to provide unique and engaging content.
A great example of content marketing on Snapchat comes from Sour Patch Kid. Here is one of their first videos showcasing sour then sweet pranks.
These are just some of the many ways that a brand could use the Snapchat app. It may or may not be right for your brand. If your audience is between 18 – 34, you should at least familiarize yourself with Snapchat and consider if it should be a part of your marketing strategy.
Have you ever used Snapchat for your business? Was it worth the investment? We’d love to hear from you.