It’s time for business owners to start getting serious about Snapchat.
The app is fertile ground for marketing, with a blossoming user base that surpassed Twitter’s in 2016 and some high-profile companies like BMW, Under Armour, and the NBA leading the way.
There is no downside to learning and using this unique mobile-only social media platform. And with an IPO rumored for 2017, Snapchat’s profile with the general public and its user base are poised for continued growth.
Launched in 2012, Snapchat now has about 150 million daily active users, according to WebpageFX. 71 percent are under the age of 25.
Snapchat’s differentiator is that the messages, or “Snaps,” that users send to each other are deleted automatically after being viewed.
Snapchat is the least intuitive social media to approach from a marketing perspective. There are no hashtags to categorize conversations; businesses can’t share snaps with their entire following, only with individual users; and advertising options are limited, for now. Snapchat’s revenue is expected to more than double to $1 billion this year, and it will, no doubt, expand and rethink its advertising products after going public.
Should you be using Snapchat for business marketing? Here are five reasons we would answer with an unabashed “yes!”
1) To show a different side of your company
What resonates with Snapchat users are behind-the-scenes peeks at the inner workings of your business. Snapchat is a fun way to introduce unreleased products and new employees, and for showing customers parts of your company’s operations that most people aren’t aware of.
Most of your Snaps will take the form of short video clips. Information can also be Snapped in picture form, and the app features a host of emojis and text overlay options to get creative with.
2) To join the under 25 crowd
Snapchat skews young and female. WebpageFX reports that 70 percent of Snapchat users are female, and 71 percent are under the age of 25. Users spend an average of a half hour on the app per session.
Snapchat is a chance to meet these young users where they are and get accustomed to their creative conventions and ways of interacting on their phones.
3) Advertising opportunities
Snapchat offers three forms of advertising to businesses.
- Snap ads - These are 5-15 second videos you produce for distribution on Snapchat’s “Discover” channel. This is a channel all Snapchat users can access that has branded content from businesses and media companies. About 40 percent of Snapchat’s users check the Discover channel daily.
The ads are short, but advertisers can include a swipe up feature to reveal more information to viewers.
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- Sponsored Geofilters - This option gives Snapchat users a branded overlay to use on their Snaps when they are close to your business location. This option is unlike any other form of social media advertising and allows your followers to spread the word about your business in a creative way.
- Sponsored Lenses - These are similar to geofilters, except they are not location specific.
4) To run promotions
Some retail stores have been experimenting with unique Snapchat offers and promotions. For instance, restaurants have had success enticing their customers to Snap out a photo of their order for an instant discount. Businesses have also had success Snapping out coupons and promotional codes for customers to use at the point of sale, as well as running contests and scavenger hunts.
This in an emerging area for businesses, and it will be exciting to see the innovations to come.
5) To tell your Snapchat story
Although regular Snaps can only be shared one-to-one, the app also offers Snapchat Stories. This is a place where you can tell an extended story with a series of photos and longer videos. Stories are posted for anyone to see and are available for 24 hours.
Getting versed in the marketing conventions of Snapchat now will put you ahead of the competition. It will also make your brand conversant with the up-and-coming generation. The time is now to get in on it.
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Breezy Hill Marketing is a full-service digital marketing company located in Vermont. We specialize in marketing strategy, social media marketing, and Vermont web design. We love working with clients to build successful digital marketing programs.