Using Snapchat For Marketing Success

It’s well-known that 13-25 year olds are a notoriously difficult demographic to market to. But if there’s one thing this age group has really taken to, it’s new app Snapchat, which shares over 400 million image messages every day.

How It Works And Why You Want To Be Part Of The Action

Snapchat lets users takes pictures, known as snaps, on their mobile device which they can send to other users. Once opened the snap is available for a short time limit of up to 10 seconds, and a new ‘Stories’ feature allows items to be kept for 24 hours.

As the nature of this app is time-sensitive due to the limited lifespan of content, it’s the perfect environment to deliver a call to action, build pre-launch excitement or do anything else with an inherent sense of urgency.

So here are four ways you can leverage Snapchat as a cost-effective tool to market your business amongst the teen and tween crowd.

1. Build A New Crowd Of Followers With A Giveaway

Giveaways are a great way to expand your reach to a new audience and build a new follower base that you can communicate with in the future.

Using your existing social media platforms and website, encourage your existing followers to add your business on Snapchat and get a specific number of friends to also add you (e.g. 5 friends), in return for a voucher or limited-time giveaway offer.

Create a special hashtag for the occasion that reinforces your brand identity. This will help people to share the offer with others, as well as enable you to track subscribers.

2. Reward Current Customers with Mobile Coupons

Once you have gained followers, you can encourage brand loyalty by sending coupon codes as snaps to your followers. Because snaps are only available for 24 hours it encourages customers to head on down to your store pronto to make the most of the deal.

A popular U.S. frozen yoghurt chain recently used this strategy and sent discount codes to mobile devices of users who sent them snaps of them or their friends enjoying frozen yoghurt from the store.

Within a few days 1,400 teens had taken part, and the company had built up a strong user list that they could target for future marketing.

3. Show Teasers Of A New Product

Snapchat is a marketer’s dream in terms of creating pre-launch buzz or hype. Sneak peek combinations of images and 5 second videos can be used to create mystery and excitement leading up to a product launch.

Treat your subscribers like VIPs and include a string of teasers and behind-the-scenes previews before a new product hits the shelves. U.S. Takeaway giant Taco Bell used this method to great effect when they released a new burrito recently.

4. Celebrate Lesser-Known Holidays With Special Snapchat Events

With its younger target demographic, Snapchat is the perfect place to be more creative, quirky and fun. Obviously sending out holiday greeting snaps at times like Christmas and Easter keeps your brand front-of-mind when customers are deciding what to shop for, but did you know there are a whole range of not-so-celebrated occasions that you could indulge?

Examples include Word Nerd day on January 9th, Umbrella day on February 10th, or Talk Like a Pirate day on September 19th. Google ‘lesser-known holidays’ for some more ideas or create your own.

It’s great to build and connect with fans in interesting ways, and even create some sales in your business’s slow season. Make sure you let customers know ahead of time though.

The signs are that youth are willing to engage with businesses on this platform, as long as the marketing is fun. It also offers greater versatility since it is a mobile strategy and can potentially provide a high return on investment with extremely minimal and inexpensive access.

Snapchat might not be a good use of marketing time and energy for everyone, but if your target audience is saturated with teens or under 25s, it’s a fun and exciting new opportunity.


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