Whenever a social media platform comes out the question always arises of how can we make this work for our business? Businesses were initially weary of using social media in order to foster growth, but by now everyone realizes that it is a medium that is perfect for businesses. Social media allows companies to interact with people on their own level. It also allows the perfect medium to make customers feel important or special, and really that’s how everyone wants to feel.
Snapchat provides a real interesting example of social media that might be a little bit more difficult to see how it can benefit a business. Yet those companies that are taking advantage of it have seen some amazing results. The fact that a lot of companies aren’t really using Snapchat as much as some of the other media outlets only increases it’s worth. It’s a whole lot easier to block out the 500 companies you like on Facebook as opposed to those couple that send you a “snap” every once in a while.
Snapchat: demographic targeting
One of aspects of Snapchat that makes it so key is its demographics. Snapchat is most popular with people between the ages of 13-25. This can often be a demographic that is hard to reach, and one that has grown increasingly weary of Facebook. Yet this is also a demographic that drives a whole lot of revenue. You might think that people under the age of 18 don’t spend all that money, but go into any household with kids that age and you’ll see how much they influence the decisions that are made.
Perhaps the biggest major company to take advantage of Snapchat has been Taco Bell. They realize that their company is very popular in that previously mentioned 13-25 group and were early adopters of Snapchat for business marketing purposes. They have used Snapchat to get a buzz going about new products before they hit their stores, and have had tremendous success with it. One way to really make a customer feel special is to give them information that not everyone else is privy too.
Up close and personal
Another reason that Snapchat works so well for business marketing is the personalized nature of getting a snap. A snap is the most pure capture of a moment in time that one can achieve. You are not able to use a stock image and not able to even zoom in. It’s simple a photo of whatever that marketing person is seeing at that point in time, done with their phone. This especially hits home with the younger demographic that has grown up in this area of fancy over the top illusionary advertising. They have thus grown increasingly weary of corporate pandering, they are in essence paranoid of deception. Snapchat to them is honest and a grass roots type of advertising that is especially appealing.
While Taco Bell has experienced success, Snapchat can work even more effectively for the small business. Snapchat operates on phone numbers so it is essential that you have a customer contact list in order to connect with them over Snapchat. If not you could use Snapchat to create one by offering a rewards program for customers who snap you a picture of them utilizing your brand. A key thing to remember when utilizing this technique is to set your account to accept snaps from anyone. Snapchat can be a great way to get out coupon codes during other times as well. It also creates a sense of urgency due to the limited availability of snaps.
Some of the success stories I have heard for small businesses utilizing Snapchat include a local sculptor and a custom cabinet maker. The visual medium is something that works really well to showcase these people’s work and has created brand recognition for them amongst the community.
As with any social media platform it’s going to be a little bit of trial and error to see which strategies utilizing Snapchat work best for your particular niche. Now though is the perfect time to jump on Snapchat to help your business grow. Perhaps you weren’t an early adopter of other social media platforms and came to regret it, don’t let it pass you by this time.
Frank currently resides in West Palm Beach, FL and attends Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton, FL. He previously attended the University of Florida in Gainesville, FL. He has covered sports for both schools newspapers and written for numerous websites on a variety of topics. Frank has been active in social media for businesses for the past 6 years running the accounts of everything from a debt management company to an adult nightclub. In his free time he enjoys college football, golf, art, and films.
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