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The video-messaging app Snapchat® is one of the fastest growing social networks. It has more than 100 million daily active users, and although its users tend to trend young—71 percent fall into the 18 to 34 age range—it is becoming an integral part of many businesses’ social media marketing strategies.

So what exactly is Snapchat? It is a social media network that allows users to share “snaps,” or video messages, in real time. Snaps can be viewed for up to 10 seconds. After that time, the snap disappears—unless the user decides to keep it by taking a screen shot of the message. A favourite business feature, Snapchat stories, strings together snaps to create video narratives. Stories, unlike snaps, have a duration of 24 hours. These video narratives are being viewed at a rate of 1 billion times per day.

You may be wondering how you could apply this social messaging app and all it has to offer to your business. Let us count the ways:

  • Provide access to live events: The real-time nature of Snapchat makes it a great platform to broadcast live events. Consider the possibilities, such as speaking engagements and seminars, trade shows, events and galas—you name it! Stringing together snaps provides viewers direct access not available through other channels, which includes and engages those who otherwise would not have had access to your event.
  • Offer sneak peeks: Is your organization launching a new product or offering a new service? Snapchat can be a great place to offer customers a sneak peek of what’s to come. Provide VIP access to loyal customers with a private viewing. They’re sure to appreciate an exclusive glimpse or the opportunity to check out new merchandise before it hits the floor.
  • Go behind the scenes: Show customers what really goes on inside your organization. Snapchat gives you the flexibility to offer virtual tours, product demos, or a no-holds-barred glimpse into a day in the life of a forward-facing employee. Giving your customers this kind of “backstage pass” can really build brand loyalty.
  • Deliver coupons, perks or promotions: Promote engagement by asking users to post their own snap showing how they interact with your brand. Encourage participation by holding random draws for selfie remotes or sticks. Or reward those who watch your Snapchat stories in their entirety with coupons, discounts or company logo’d merchandise, such as a Cell Phone Cradle, mop-top screen cleaner or smartphone wallet.

Snapchat for business can be a great way to strengthen brand awareness, increase engagement and enhance the customer experience. You’ve just got to know how to use it! Can you think of other ways businesses can engage and interact with customers using Snapchat?

Talbot, Kate. “5 Ways to Use Snapchat for Business.” Social Media Examiner. N.p., 28 July 2015. Web. Retrieved 16 Jan. 2016.

Snaps.” Snapchat | Support. N.p., n.d. Web. Retrieved 16 Jan. 2016.

Stories.” Snapchat | Support. N.p., n.d. Web. Retrieved 16 Jan. 2016.

Solomon, Brian. “How To Use Snapchat: A Small Business Guide.” Forbes. Forbes Magazine, 25 Aug. 2015. Web. Retrieved 16 Jan. 2016.



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