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Views on Snapchat can be very valuable for your brand. Snapchat has an average of 186 million users per day, and these users create 3 billion snaps daily. In other words, this social network channel has a larger audience than Twitter, which has 126 million daily users.
Another reason Snapchat is worth some of your marketing dollars is that so many young people use it. While Millennials and the younger generation are increasingly challenging to reach via other media channels, Snapchat is almost exclusively used by the young. According to a Pew Research survey, 78% of 18 to 24-year-olds use Snapchat.
So, you understand why you need to cultivate and reach your audience on Snapchat, but how do you do it? Whether you’re a Snapchat beginner, or an experienced digital marketer looking for advanced tips, this guide will teach you how to get more views and followers on Snapchat.
Share Your Snapchat on Other Social Media
Unfortunately, the Snapchat app isn’t geared towards discovery. Snapchat helps people follow those whom they consider close friends and the brands that are most important to them. So, gaining followers just through the app is tough.
However, as part of your overall digital media strategy, you have other social media channels you can use to promote your Snapchat. Share your Snapchat code frequently on your Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and wherever else you have a following.
You can use other marketing materials to promote your Snapchat as well.
Consider sharing your Snapchat through your brand’s:
- Email newsletter
- During events
- Business cards
- Other advertisements
Remember that many people suffer from a bit of a social-media burnout. People, on average, have 5.54 social media accounts. They don’t want to keep seeing the same content on all of them. Snapchat’s format almost requires you to make unique content for it, which you may not be sharing elsewhere. To promote your Snapchat, send your other social media followers teasers about exclusive content or offers that are only available through your snaps.
Basic Snapchat Suggestions
Is your brand just getting started with Snapchat? Here are the quick Snapchat basics you need to know. More advanced users, feel free to skip these basic tips:
Post frequently: The latest updated story is presented to users first, and the higher up your story is on your follower's feed, the more likely they will look at it. The average user checks the app 20 times per day.
- Music: Add music to your snaps to make them more entertaining.
- Captions: Adding captions is a just not just for accessibility, but they also guide users who check their snaps with the sound low or muted when they are in public.
- Polls and quizzes: Engaging your followers with polls and quizzes is a smart move. Everyone loves to give feedback on questions that matter to them.
- Follow your followers: If you want your brand to make real connections with people, you need to follow them back, at least the first few hundred followers.
- Change your profile picture: People love novelty, and your profile picture is a great way to catch the attention of a follower who doesn’t open your snaps.
While our previous suggestions looked at Snapchat and how it works, it’s time to look at your audience and what they want. The simple truth is that if your audience finds your snaps valuable, they’ll watch. If your snaps aren’t valuable, they will catch up on your story much less often.
What do Snapchat users find valuable? You need to have a robust understanding of your audience, or the audience you want to have, to find out. However, you can find lots of inspiration from popular brands’ Snapchats.
For example, Taco Bell was an early adopter of the story medium on Snapchat and hasn’t stopped taking risks with the platform. They use their snaps to announce new products and remind their followers about specials. It makes sense that those who follow Taco Bell want to hear about their products.
Mashable uses Snapchat to share their live reporting, while Amazon uses it to offer promotions and exclusives. Everlane uses the app to do live walk-through of their factory, demonstrating to customers that their manufacturing is as transparent as they promise. Using Snapchat as a "backstage pass" can be very rewarding.
When coming up with your own Snapchat value propositions, don’t forget the power of education. The UK Department of Transport held a successful campaign to educate youth about the consequences of driving high. Surely, there are things your brand can teach.
Snapchat thrives on variety. The nature of the short clips of content might be a pitfall for brands that aren't willing to take risks. Make no mistake that if you share similar snaps time and again, then your audience will tune out.
You need to offer variety while achieving a relatively consistent brand story and look, which can be a challenge. The best way to figure out how to balance these needs is to get inspired by brands that are offering constant change on their Snapchats.
Working with a more serious brand? Your efforts to offer variety don’t have to be unprofessional. Consider Cisco, the major technology company. To boost recruitment and get its brand message out, the Cisco marketing department turned their Snapchat over to non-marketing staff once per day for a year. The #WeAreCisco campaign turned out a wide variety of content and helped the brand meet its engagement goals.
Smaller businesses can still create variety on their Snapchat team. In fact, if your digital marketing tea is just one person, you can still do it. One clear example is DJ Khaled. While snapping his daily routine, DJ Khaled adds in funny, meaningful, motivational, or surprising quips.
Offer a Conversation
Though you may use Snapchat as a one-way conversation, and many popular brands do, you can also use the platform as a real conversation tool. This can help boost your views and make the most of a small number of Snapchat followers.
One brand doing this very well is Birchbox. They used Snapchat's video call feature to have direct, one-on-one, conversations with their customers. Not only is this a valuable way to connect with customers and answer their questions, but you can also use what you learn from these talks to better your Snapchat strategy.
If your brand isn’t one that naturally lends well to direct conversations, you still have options to receive input from your followers. GrubHub is a brand to watch if you need inspiration on this front. They focus on snaps that ask followers for a response, such as polls, quizzes, or contests. GrubHub once asked its Snapchat followers to send them a snap of a “food doodle” to win a prize.
Take Risks with Snapchat
Brands may view Snapchat as a more risky platform to engage their customers on; however, the rewards for taking the risk can be tremendous. Not only does Snapchat give you the chance to capture the attention of a young audience, but its flexible and short format challenges you to be creative about your marketing in ways you may have never imagined.