Social media marketing is the new television commercial in the business world. If you want to get your services and your products in front of consumers, social media advertising is a powerful tool. While developing and deploying a social media marketing plan, do not underestimate the power of Snapchat, a widely popular app that is offering new paid advertising for businesses. If you aren’t interested in paid advertising, read on, because you can still market yourself on Snapchat either way.

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Photo Credit: http://www.liaisonedu.com/blog/snapchat/

Snapchat is a mobile app and social media platform on which users can send each other videos, photos, and messages. Once a user opens visual content in the Snapchat app, photos/videos disappear after ten seconds. This is quite different than other platforms, like Facebook and Instagram, that index and collect user-produced visual content.

This also means that users do not experience the visual content in chronological order, like one does while scrolling through a timeline on a Facebook profile. Content on Snapchat is fast and fleeting. The app attracts users between the ages of 18 and 34 who enjoy fun, bite-size videos and photos. The majority of Snapchat users are college students, but overall, more than 100 million users use the app every day. Even more impressive is the fact that 100 billion videos are opened by users around the world every day on Snapchat.

What is the draw for marketers? If your target audience falls into the description above, then you definitely do not want to miss out on the revenue you could be drawing in on this platform. While designing and implementing a Snapchat campaign, remember to consider the type of engagement you will create with users.

First of all, advertising on Snapchat resembles the teaser campaigns used by movie studios. (Hollywood produces teaser trailers that are about one minute long to get audiences excited about upcoming films.) Teaser marketing is effective because it shows people enough to entice them and pique their interest, it’s short and gets the message across, and it leaves people wanting more. Additionally, users open snaps at their leisure (akin to email marketing), so you don’t have to worry about an ad or a message getting buried in a newsfeed.

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Photo Credit: http://chicory.co/blog/how-top-food-bloggers-use-snapchat

So to be effective on Snapchat, you need to create a lasting message in under ten seconds that will engage users and make them aware of what you have to offer. The good news is content this short does not take as long to produce when compared to other forms of advertising (i.e. television commercials and YouTube videos). Also, users are more likely to give your ad their undivided attention, since ten seconds is all they’re going to get.

Snapchat now offers paid ads through Snapchat for Business, including Sponsored Geofilters, Snap Ads Between Stories, and Sponsored Lens.

Snap Ads Between Stories: Stories on Snapchat are narratives users create and add snaps to, which disappear after one day. Paid ads are now played between snaps in a Story. They are skippable, but users can also swipe them and choose more options (like clicking-through to content from a company). This is an excellent choice for directing users to your website, blog, or product pages.

Sponsored Lens: A sponsored lens is an exciting form of advertising that users actually interact with. Taco Bell did a campaign with a sponsored lens on Snapchat, in which users took photos of themselves and added an animation of their heads turning into tacos. It sounds silly on the surface, but this is the type of fun and amusing content Snapchat users gravitate towards and pay attention to. These snaps are also shareable and frequently posted to Stories.

Sponsored Geofilters: Geofilters are location-specific. Imagine you’re eating froyo with your friends at a local shop. You take a photo of it and create a snap with a layer on top (an image) that advertises the froyo shop; then you add it to your Story or send it to your friends. Other geofilters are product-specific. For example, if you are marketing a makeup product, users can add the geofilter when uploading photos of themselves wearing your makeup.

Gatorade, the NBA, Starbucks, Paramount, (RED), and Spotify are some of the companies who have launched successful marketing campaigns on Snapchat. Snapchat also debuted Creative Partners, a paid option to develop an in-house campaign with the company.

Ideas for advertising your business on Snapchat include:

-Featuring your products being used in interesting and creative ways

-Sharing compelling behind-the-scenes moments at your office or organization

-Pushing coupons and giveaways that prompt users to interact with you

-Snapping photos and videos that give users a peek into an experience you’re marketing (i.e. show off a haunted house or show users the inside of your spa)

All of these methods work to market yourself, get business in the door, and gain followers on social media. Figure out how to make Snapchat work for you to establish your brand and credibility online.

If you’re interested in finding out more about how to grow and engage leads on social media platforms, contact Square 1 Group for a consultation today. We are an experienced team of digital marketing professionals based in Los Angeles, California, who can assist you in making the most out of your social media presence and online marketing efforts.