In recent years, Snapchat has followed the natural path that many social networking platforms seem to follow. Although starting as a casual app that friends use to communicate with each other, Snapchat has continually advanced and is now an attractive proposition for businesses too.
If you’ve been watching the trend closely and now want to know whether or not you should invest, we have the perfect guide for you. Today, we’re going to talk about the following:
- Why businesses should consider Snapchat
- The audiences that can be reached
- The best features to utilize
- Tips for success
Why Choose Snapchat?
If you’re like most businesses, you’re now fed up of being told to operate on this app and that website. However, we feel it’s always good to review your marketing strategy and brand activity. With Snapchat, we have an application that provides fresh ways to reach out to an audience and interact with the target market.
According to Digiday, there are now 186 million active users who visit Snapchat on a daily basis. In the United States, this is just under 80 million and, each month, around 70% of users between the ages of 13 and 34 are reached by ads.
Moving away from the numbers, we feel there are certain benefits to being present on Snapchat:
- Unique and Authentic — Though there are difficulties to marketing on Snapchat, it’s also a fantastic way to reach out to a new audience. Let’s face it, Snapchat is different to other platforms and it also doesn’t seem so forced. With a simple snap of your team working hard in the office, you can provide your audience with an inside look at your brand.
- Fewer Competitors — On Facebook and Instagram, it’s a constant battle for recognition and attention. Since Snapchat isn’t yet utilized as widely for businesses as other platforms, you won’t have to vie for attention. What’s more, once you’ve been added, the customer will see your content as they browse through their stories.
- New Audience — For those who have an older audience but want to attract a younger crowd (like a magazine or news website for example) Snapchat could be the opportunity you need.
- Free and Fun — Finally, there’s something informal and fun with Snapchat compared to other platforms (not to mention free). As long as you’re willing to invest a little time every so often, it can be a rewarding experience. With some fun filters and posts, you can really engage an audience.
Of course, we should talk about the audience on Snapchat because this platform won’t be for everybody. According to some statistics, a minimum of six in every ten are in the age group we used earlier (between 13 and 34 years). Furthermore, a whopping 70% fall beneath the 25-year mark. Aside from age, the split between women and men is currently at 70:30, respectively.
Does this mean you shouldn’t use Snapchat if your target market is older than 35? Well, this is an intriguing question. Interestingly, recent statistics suggest that the average age of those signing up to the platform is increasing.
Should You Attempt a Snapchat Strategy?
Before we look at some cool features, are there any businesses that should avoid Snapchat altogether?
On the whole, we wouldn’t want to steer people away from Snapchat; with a strong history and the statistics we saw earlier, it’s fair to say the platform has gone beyond being a ‘trend’.
This being said, those with a target market purely above 50 years of age might be better off focusing their attention elsewhere. If the younger demographic wouldn’t have any interest in what you’re trying to sell, you may as well spend your time on existing strategies.
In the coming years, your demographic may change, and the users of Snapchat may also change, so be sure to keep an eye on how the platform progresses.
Useful Snapchat Features
If you think Snapchat is just a one-trick pony, think again because there’s plenty of things you can do. Over time, test these different features and see which bring the most engagement.
Images and Videos — If your time is limited, it takes just seconds to take a picture, add a comment, and then post it to your story. Once this has been uploaded, it will be available for all to see for 24 hours. For example, this could be a simple shot of your office, a new product, or absolutely anything.
You can also record videos in 10-second chunks. From introducing your brand to providing a quick tip for followers, this is another way to build engagement.
Editing — Once you start to build experience on the platform, you can play around with the editing tools, emojis, and filters. Often, people avoid these because they don’t want to look unprofessional. For us, we believe it helps to make a brand more personable. Suddenly, they’re seeing a brand produce snaps similar to those they enjoy from friends.
Public Profile — By clicking the ghost at the top of the screen, click on the settings button and you’ll be able to switch your profile to public mode. This way, everybody can see your story and you aren’t limiting your reach.
View Time — If you want to avoid a common mistake for businesses on Snapchat, be sure to change the view time. When people open your story or individual snaps, they have a certain amount of time before the picture leaves the screen and is gone. Rather than having the image show for three seconds, increase this to ten and allow people to take in your full message. These days, you can also set it to stay on their screen until they actively swipe to end it.
Tips for Success with Snapchat
As promised, we want to finish on a few tips to get you started on Snapchat. What strategies are effective? How can you track results? How can you get people interacting with your Snapchat account?
To really kickstart your business Snapchat, we recommend the following tried and tested strategies:
- Work with influencers
- Provide exclusive coupon codes
- Build excitement for a new product/service or a change to the business
- Give insights and behind-the-scenes glances
Read More: Influencer Marketing: Does it actually work?
Set Some Goals
Just like anything else in the business world, setting goals allows you to push for growth and measure success. For example, do you want to reach 100 followers in the first month? Do you want a specific number of referrals (coupon codes) from your Snapchat?
Advertise Your Snapchat Everywhere
You’ve created your account, you’re ready to post great content, now what? To get people engaging with Snapchat, you need to let everybody know that you’re active there. We recommend adding a small Snapchat icon on your website, email signature, all marketing materials, event booths, newsletters, and anything else you produce.
After first setting up your account, start posting content and then advertise the profile on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. Rather than sending people to an empty profile, make sure you give visitors a reason to stay.
Furthermore, you want to make it easier for people to add you…and this comes with QR codes. By sharing your QR code (essentially a digital barcode that can be read by a smartphone camera), all Snapchat users can add your account in a matter of seconds.
Use Snapchat Insights
Even if you already know your audience, Snapchat Insights can be a great way to learn view counts, demographics of followers, average attention span, and more. As a built-in part of Snapchat, take advantage and use the information to shape your content.
Assess the Competition
If you want a good marker of how you’re doing on Snapchat, look at the competition. Are they as active as you? How many followers do they have? What sort of content do they produce? After this, you can produce SWOT analysis — Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats.
Create Winning Content
We’ve spoken about ‘behind-the-scenes’ content, but what else works? For some, they find success with asking questions, interviews, polls, product insights, tips, and more. As long as it’s light, short, and either funny or educational, you should be good to go.
As our final tip, there’s no use posting lots of content and not checking to see whether any of it is actually working. With all marketing, there needs to be some form of ROI. By visiting the Insights dashboard, you’ll see all sorts of data and we recommend paying attention to these five metrics:
- View time
- Unique views
- Fall-off rate
- Completion rate
If you have a young target market and you can produce interesting content, Snapchat is waiting for you to come along and take the market by storm. Remember, Snapchat also has an ad feature and you can pay for sponsored Geofilters and sponsored Lenses too.