Social Media Blogs by Aliza Sherman
Aliza Sherman is a news media entrepreneur, author, women's issues activist, and international speaker.
Snapchat Really Wants Your Business
Snapchat has changed, and they’ve changed for the better with businesses in mind. In their quest for advertising dollars, Snapchat has been tweaking how their app works to accommodate companies that want to market their products and services.
To review, Snapchat is a social mobile app entirely based on your smartphone that lets you take or upload photos and videos or “snaps” and share them with others. Initially, it was a person-to-person app, and your messages disappeared shortly after they were viewed. While the idea of an impermanent message appealed to young people, many companies were left scratching their heads wondering how to take advantage of posting when their messages could only be seen by one person and would be gone the next day.
Enter Snapchat Stories. Snapchat Stories allows users to post images and video to the public to be seen by their followers. Yes, they still disappear after 24 hours, however, there is also a feature allowing users to download their stories and leverage them elsewhere online.
Planning for your Snapchat Stories can be like storyboarding a television show, and while you can be more spontaneous about your snaps, you will have a better chance of staying on brand with key messages if you determine in advance what you’re going to post. Remember that you can use both photos and videos in your Stories, and mixing them up can make for a more engaging Story.
One of the greatest appeals of Snapchat for users are their photo filters that include text and graphical overlays to alter and add to their images and video. Take advantage of filters as you are telling your story and posting them publicly through Stories, but don’t be gratuitous. Again, varying things up will keep your Story interesting.
Some major companies such as movie studios are purchasing actual filters that are not triggered by location. These are said to run upwards of $250,000 dollars so are probably out of the price range of most small businesses. Still, using popular filters including those of noncompeting companies is a way to participate in the Snapchat community and sharing recognizable images.
One feature that is bringing in revenues for Snapchat and gives companies the chance to extend their brand is the Geofilter. Geofilters are custom filters that show up in specific geographical areas and on specific days and times. You can now design and purchase a filter and specify where it will show up and when. Prices for geofilters start under $10 and can go as high as $15,000 or more, depending on the square footage covered and duration.
When Snapchat users arrive at a location where your company has designed and purchased a filter, they will see your filter pop up as an option to decorate their image or video. That location could be your retail or restaurant establishment or a conference you’re attending or even a public place, like a park although if the location is public, a geofilter with your logo may not be appropriate and not get approved by Snapchat so be creative without being too commercial.
In general, your geofilter can contain your logo or some other recognizable branding or appealing design. The emphasis should be on universal appeal, a design that people would love to put on their photos and videos. Once you purchase your geofilter, you’ll be able to access analytics that will tell you how many times people used your filter and how many people saw snaps with your filter.
Snapchat continues to look for new ways to turn their wildly popular app into a lucrative business. The company recently debuted a wearable tech product called Spectacles, actual glasses you can wear and use to take snaps and upload directly to your Snapchat app. Cheaper and less stealth than Google’s Glass, Spectacles could be the next thing in live broadcasting. Of course, it remains to be seen if they’ll catch on.
Read other social media blogs by Aliza Sherman