Is Your Business Snap Worthy? Snapchat and Social Media Marketing

The mobile app that allows users to send and receive picture/video messages is spreading like wildfire among Generation Z and Millennials. These messages, also referred to as “Snaps,” can only be viewed between 1-10 seconds, and the majority of Snapchat users are between the ages of 13 and 25. Let me guess…you think Snapchat is something your teenager uses to send 10 second selfies to friends. It turns out you’re right, but the mobile app is also perfect for digital marketing!

Why It Works

Since a snap only appears for a short amount of time before it disappears, people tend to give their full attention to the message being shared, and there’s nothing a marketer loves more than capturing their audience’s undivided attention. Snaps create a sense of exclusivity that the other social networks fail to provide.

A number of brands have found Snapchat useful for hosting contests, providing sneak peeks, offering coupons, and even giving followers a behind the scenes experience. IHOP, for example, keeps their followers hungry with mouthwatering pictures of new delicious plates of pancakes. snapchat 16 handles 16 Handles, a frozen yogurt chain, used Snapchat to offer coupons. In order to receive one, customers were required to take a photo of their ice cream and send it to 16 handles via Snapchat. The customer would then quickly receive a message back with a code. The code would be presented to the cashier to receive a discount anywhere from 5%-100%. Not only did this bring in over 1,400 customers, but it also gave 16 Handles a long list of frozen yogurt loving followers to share promotional content with.

During the 2014 Super Bowl, Audi came together with The Onion and Huge to create a unique marketing campaign using Snapchat. Their ultimate goal: to get people talking about them. Audi kept their snaps light and humorous. Word broke out about these entertaining snaps and soon came the followers. Audi’s Snapchat account gained 10,500 followers from the Super Bowl. At the end of the campaign, their Snaps were viewed by over 100,000 viewers. 2,400 tweets mentioned the Audi Snaps. From this, 37 million news feeds were reached. After the campaign, Audi had a growing number of followers that continued to stay updated with snaps. Here at CM, we are fond of Taco Bell’s Snaps…because who can resist a 10 second glimpse of a delicious taco?

taco bell snapchat People love transparency! Take your followers on a tour of the place, let them see how things work, let them get to know your people, and let people get excited about your business. A bakery for example, can post photos and videos of the baking process and the final product. Pictures of delicious goodies will keep followers coming back to open snaps. Snapchat will keep them on their toes because customers never know what they are going to see until they open the snap.

93% of communication is nonverbal. Let’s face it…we live in a visual world. In a study done by New York-based marketing company Sumpto, well over a thousand college students were asked about Snapchat. 77% of them said they used Snapchat daily. So why not try something a little different?

How-To Snap for Business

To start your own Snapchat campaign:

  • Download the Snapchat
  • Create a branded handle
  • Brainstorm a list of potential snaps to send and campaign ideas
  • Announce that your brand is using Snapchat via social media, e-mail blasts, and print marketing collateral

Snapable Ideas

  • Reward customers with coupons or promo codes
  • Sponsor a Snapchat Giveaway/Contest
  • Announce company events
  • Create Snapchat stories
  • Give a behind the scenes sneak peak of your business, a new product, or a special offer


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Rio Ziegler

Social Media Manager at Customer Magnetism
When Rio is not whipping up social media content, managing social ads, and analyzing social data, you can find her living in her local gym, pursuing a plethora of random hobbies, and feeding her addiction to salt water as CM’s resident mermaid.