Snapchat as a Marketing Tool

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By Giselle Cartagena

The power of social media and its effect on our everyday lives is prominent today. The usage of such on a personal level can be an easy decision but what triggers uncertainty can be integrating it as a business strategy for a company. One of the most intriguing networking outlets is Snapchat. The four-year-old outlet stands with 10 billion views per day and growth of 400 millions users per day, vastly surpassing the historical growth rates of legendary sites like Facebook and Twitter. This marks an impressive opportunity to approach an undiscovered target market and to increase brand awareness for any business. This blog will provide an overview of the marketing opportunities Snapchat offers for businesses.

In essence, Snapchat is a mobile app used to share pictures and videos with friends and family for a limited time of up to 10 seconds. The content automatically disappears in 24 hours. What this outlet provides for users and their followers is a sense of instant communication and need for attention so they don’t miss out on anything. Snapchat stories can also be created by compiling a group of images and videos, each of 10 seconds as well, to tell a story about your day. Snapchat has gained popularity for how insightful and interactive communication can be between users. Recent usage stats show it increased more than 350% in the past year. Although, Snapchat initially impacted teens, it currently stands with 41% of its users in the U.S. falling between 18- 34 years old, so approaching this group of active users could promise immense benefits.

Aware of its largely undiscovered audience and potential market for businesses, Snapchat has created competitive marketing and brand awareness options. The key as a business is to match your business goals with the available market and strategically decide the type of relationship desired with customers as it a more personal and direct platform. One of the most effective options is the geofilters to promote engagement with a business. Businesses can purchase an on-demand geofilter where an event is happening and their customers can snap themselves using the filter for their friends to see, exposing products and the specific location. Digital ads can be used with Snap Ads that are advertising videos or images played in between other users’ stories. A recent survey of consumers between the ages of 16-36 listed Snapchat Ads highly on achieving attention, emotional response, and intent to purchase twice more than Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube. Another available approach is promoting incentives as a study shows that 73% of users voted with high likability to act on marketing efforts through Snapchat. For example, coupons can be snapped on a business account for all your followers to redeem within 24 hours. Ultimately, if these options seem overwhelming or sound like a foreign language, businesses can seek Snapchat’s Creative Partners to develop strategic advertising campaigns and plan executions.

Many businesses have jumped into the Snapchat marketing wagon and have used strategic techniques by connecting with their followers to increase awareness and drive in purchase decisions. Taco Bell and Starbucks have had memorable campaigns by using “Snapchat lenses”, which placed their newest launched taco and drink on the user’s face to be shared with their followers. Companies with smaller budgets can advertise by creating insightful stories to promote events and build loyalty or send direct incentives within a selected community.

Snapchat has developed an interactive and engaging approach to advertise for businesses compared to other social media sites. Whether it is a story to build a transparent insight of the company, geofilters to promote an event, first-hand launch of products, or personalized incentives, brands can discover a variety of suitable strategies to support their marketing efforts in a new market.


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