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Should your Brand Join Snapchat?

2014 March 26
by roostonline

In this post, we’re looking at the ways in which brands are turning the creative challenge presented by Snapchat’s fast-disappearing content into an advantage.

Since its launch in 2011, the app has gained 30 million monthly active users, the main demographic of which is between the ages of 13-23, and brands have started to recognise its potential.

The biggest barrier for brands looking to connect with their target audience on Snapchat is there is no way to search for and follow users, they have to be added by Snapchat users themselves

US-based Taco Bell was one of the first brands to utilise Snapchat, encouraging their audience to follow them on the app via a tweet which received excellent engagement. They then used Snapchat to announce the return of the ‘Beefy Crunch Burrito’. There were two appealing elements to this marketing approach: firstly,  the snap would be able to quickly generate buzz among fans. Secondly, as users could only view the snap once and for a maximum time of ten seconds they would have been more likely to give their full attention to it.




No two social platforms are the same and of course, Snapchat brings with it a unique variety of advantages and disadvantages:

On the negative side, as mentioned above, the brand cannot send snaps to the public unless they are added by the user, as a result this limits the amount of people who will see the images and videos. With its timed-to-disappear image content there is only so much content the audience gets access to, leaving the brand doubting who viewed the image and for how long.

Positively, Brands like McDonalds can use the Snapchat’s main age demographic to its advantage and specifically send out content aimed at this age group, this younger group can be used to influence purchase decisions of the older generation. The fast disappearing content will make the audience more eager to pay attention to the snap as they will only have ten seconds of it. Snapchat can be used as a great tool (as demonstrated by Taco Bell) to promote new products and show the consumers what to expect from the brand, causing excitement and talk over the new products.

Here are our favourite examples of ‘Snapchatting’ brand activity:

MTV UK sent fans promotional clips of the upcoming series of Geordie Shore, in addition to this they sent out Snaps to remind fans when the series was on air (just so they don’t forget).




16 Handles a frozen yogurt chain sent out its ‘Snappy New Year’ coupon promotion and claimed that after the campaign, it’s received more than 1,400 interactions with “friends”.




Last but not least, Taco Bell used Snapchat to promote the return of the ‘Beefy Crunch Burrito’, and even got people Tweeting about it.



Snapchat is definitely a great marketing outlet for a brands,  not only is it an exciting way to engage with their audience and customers, it brings variety to the brand and allows the audience to see more authentic and informal images:




Keeping your audience entertained is key, and for that reason surprising your fans by showing them that you understand their behavior and the latest trends allows brands to leverage a new group of followers as well as keeping their current ones.

So should you consider integrating Snapchat into your brand’s social mix? To help you make this decision, we recommend using Shoutlet’s four considerations:





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