social media how toAre you thinking of adding Snapchat to your social media marketing mix?

Interested in ways to use Snapchat to strengthen your brand?

With Snapchat, you can increase community engagement and brand awareness through innovative marketing campaigns.

In this article you’ll discover five ways to use Snapchat for business.

Why Snapchat?

With over 100 million daily active users and 400 million snaps per day, Snapchat is one of the fastest-growing social networks. As you might already assume, 71% of Snapchat’s U.S. users fall into the 18 to 34 age range. Even if your audience doesn’t fall in that demographic, Snapchat is becoming a vital part of global marketing strategies.

snapchat for business

Discover how to use Snapchat for business.

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Brands and content creators are using Snapchat to produce daily stories that engage and excite audiences. Snapchat stories, which last only 24 hours, are a string of snaps used to create a video narrative. There are over 1 billion views of Snapchat stories each day.

You can have a lot of fun with the platform’s native tools and features by adding filters, geofilters, text, emojis, music and more, all from within the platform.

Here are five ways you can use Snapchat to surprise and delight your audience and grow awareness for your brand.

#1: Provide Access to Live Events

Snapchat is perfect for real-time social media marketing because it can give the audience direct access to live events. You can use it for product launches, trade shows or one-of-a-kind events like the 1,000th customer to shop in your store. Snapchat gets your audience excited because you’re providing a different, more authentic view of what’s going on at the event.

The NBA has used Snapchat in a variety of ways including at the Draft, All-Star Game and Finals. At the 2014 All-Star Game, the NBA launched their presence on Snapchat, and fans were able to watch videos from L.A. Clippers star Chris Paul, and up-close snaps of the Slam Dunk Contest.

snapchat image from nba finals

Use Snapchat to engage with your audience by giving them unique access to live events.

During the 2014 Finals, the NBA posted a backstage video clip of Boston Celtics legend Bill Russell with San Antonio Spurs star Kawhi Leonard.

#2: Deliver Private Content

You can also use Snapchat to provide special content to your audience that they might not receive on other digital platforms. Think of something unique to surprise your community of followers.

Fashion brands like Rebecca Minkoff and Michael Kors have used Snapchat to debut their collections to followers before they hit the runway.

At a Valentino show for Fashion Week in Paris, actors Ben Stiller and Owen Wilson took it a step further and reprised their Zoolander roles as Derek Zoolander and Hansel for a runway walk-off. They even had a “Blue Steel” geofilter at the fashion show.

snapchat image from fashion week featuring ben stiller

On Snapchat, provide special content for your audience that they might not get on other social platforms.

The use of Snapchat at Fashion Week made consumers feel included in an exclusive world, and by doing so, they felt like they were part of the event.

#3: Offer Contests, Perks or Promotions

Everyone loves social media giveaways and promotions, so think of ways you can keep your followers coming back for more. For example, you could offer promo codes or discounts to the fans who watch your entire Snapchat story, or ask them to take a snap while holding your product.

GrubHub succeeds in Snapchat community engagement with a variety of promotions, exclusive deals and contests. In fact, they were the first brand to execute a Snapchat scavenger hunt. Each day during the five-day campaign, they asked their followers to post a daily snap, whether it was a food selfie or a food doodle.

snapchat images from grubhug followers

GrubHub’s Snapchat scavenger hunt involved five challenges, and users submitted their snaps each day to be eligible for daily prizes.

This innovative campaign showcased GrubHub’s brand personality and created two-way communication between consumers and the brand. The company was able to capture user-generated content while increasing loyalty, which is a recipe for Snapchat success.

#4: Take People Behind the Curtain

With Snapchat, you can provide behind-the-scenes content to your community, which helps create and engage a strong following. Show off your company and make sure to have fun with it. Capture birthday parties, Friday afternoons or company outings. The sky’s the limit on showing how your brand differentiates itself with company culture.

Fashion brand and startup Everlane excels at this, pulling back the curtain to educate customers while producing enticing content. They use Snapchat stories to highlight tours of offices, happy hours and manufacturing warehouses.

snapchat image from everlane

Use Snapchat to take viewers behind the scenes and give them a look at your company culture.

Everlane brings the consumer into the overall process, from ideation to creation to execution, all through Snapchat. In doing so, their customers feel like they’re part of the process.

#5: Partner With Influencers

Just like with Instagram and other social channels, social media influencers on Snapchat can help spread brand awareness and reach. By partnering with influencers, you can spread awareness to a demographic that’s hard to reach through traditional media.

Keep in mind, too, that influencers who are skilled with the Snapchat platform can create spectacular video content that can further enhance your brand voice and personality.

Sour Patch Kids partnered with social media star Logan Paul for a “Real-life Sour Patch Kid” Snapchat campaign.

snapchat image from logan paul

Partner with influencers on Snapchat to build brand awareness and extend your reach.

Paul, who has 500,000 Twitter followers, directed his social media followers to the Sour Patch Kids Snapchat account so they could see his sweet and sour pranks.

Final Thoughts

Snapchat’s authentic platform can make an impact with your followers and strengthen your brand’s point of view with real-time marketing.

What do you think? Are you already active on Snapchat? How do you integrate Snapchat into your social media marketing? What are your favorite brands to follow? Please share your thoughts in the comments below.

how to use snapchat for business

Tips for using Snapchat for business.

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  • I have never liked that Snapchat in business… though it is something I always advised as user (my tracking paranoia). I have used it few times for business… tried to do the things from list above, but never had bigger impact… so I decided to stay with current social media I know and understand how to capitalize.

    Maybe the niches were wrong, or maybe I was not so “brand awareness” orientated. Or simply I just didn’t try it hard enough to get results.

  • Martina

    Which advantage do you see except exclusive content compared to other social media channels?

  • Taking people behind the curtain and show them how you operate is the best way to connect with your audience.

  • Kate Talbot

    Totally agree. Everyone likes seeing what happens to make the products / services. Thanks for your comment.

  • Kate Talbot

    Snapchat offers authenticity and brand narrative, which can have a huge impact for your audience. The other channels can’t deliver that as much — as they focus on curated content.

  • Kate Talbot

    It’s good to try things out and see if they stick. In this case, sounds like it wasn’t the right fit. Better to provide true ROI for your business and clients with what works! Thank you for your feedback.

  • Yes… it seemed that way. I could get something out of it if, I really forced it, but I didn’t felt like it. I rather used that energy to be present in fields I know I will be doing good.

  • Martina

    Thanks for your reply! So it is the ‘live and direct’ effect which makes the audience feel connected and the brand authentic.

  • Kate Talbot

    Wow way to build a great following in such a short amount of time. I agree with your sentiments!

  • Yes, I actually wish more companies did that.

  • treb072410

    Thanks for sharing Snapchat Kate.. I really havent tried it yet, but definitely be doing it soon..

  • Kate Talbot

    Awesome! Way to give it a shot. Enjoy.

  • Peanuts & Thread

    Thats awesome that you built a following so quicklyz I’ve started snapchat a couple of times but I don’t understand how you gain followers

  • Colin Matthes

    Definitely think the authenticity and realness factor prove to be huge, especially since snapchat directly targets millennials! Millennials love authenticity. This is a huge resource if you or your company has a large millennial based audience.

  • Samantha Bailey

    Hi. We really want to implement Snapchat, do you just have to set up an account like you’re an individual or is there an option to set it up as a business? Thanks. Sam

  • Kate Talbot

    Set it up like an individual.

  • Samantha Bailey

    Thank you so much Kate 🙂

  • Nice post!

    Is it possible to become a SnapStar if you’re starting from scratch?

    I’m studying many case studies, but all of them are already VIPs in other platform (YouTube, Instagram, Vine, etc…).

    What if I’m starting with almost zero points and no friends are using SnapChat?

  • Nicky Tuk

    how does it work any help on this please i will appreciate thanks

  • Angie Robert

    Is there any way to track to business metrics? Can you include links?

  • Abdallah Fadaly

    Great article, I guess I’ll give it a try soon and promote the idea to my clients. Thank you Kate Talbot

  • Kate Talbot

    Good luck!

  • Eunice Coughlin

    These are some nice examples but a little hard to relate to the NBA and Fashion Week with my little small local business. Can you share some stories from brands that are a little more down to earth? Thanks!

  • Michelle Peterson

    Kate, Can you clarify if we can create an account that only allows posts to the story and not individual snaps that are pushed out to a select few? I’m hesitant to allow our staff access to posting if I can’t always see/monitor the content they are sharing.

  • I’d like to find a good how-to on Snapchat. Every time I try it, it drives me crazy. It seems like there are different rules for regular people than the big businesses – they can post long videos when I’ve heard normal people are limited to 15 seconds (though I don’t know if it’s true). It’s all confusing to me.

  • Yes, this!

  • Kate Talbot

    Sorry for the delay on this. You could set company guidelines where they can only add to the story and not individual snaps — so you can monitor the content. You can see if people who have access to the account if they are posting individual snaps. You can’t create an account that only does story posts, but just make rules that only stories can be sent, if that’s what you want.

  • Kate Talbot

    Even though those are large brands and entities — you can use the same tactics for your small business like using behind the scene content or giving access to events that your regular customers wouldn’t see. The authenticity of Snapchat and ability to show a different side of your company transcends scope of audience. Just give it a shot!

  • purva kini

    Hi Kate,
    the article is a really good read. the solution that you mentioned above, is that a type of setting that can be done in snapchat or is it just something that i will have to tell my employees to follow? and how can access be given to other users to the account or you just meant sharing the login credentials with them?

  • Kate Talbot

    Just a setting for your employees to follow. Yep, just share login credentials with them.

  • purva kini

    thanks for the prompt reply Kate 🙂

  • Florian Meissner

    I started using snapchat privately to figure out whether it’s actually useful for my company to have an official snapchat account (e.g. to broadcast live from events). However, if people don’t follow you, they can’t see your posts, right?
    And: how long do posts stay on my “personal story”? 3 minutes? 24h? Forever?

    I’d love to hear from people about their experiences with snapchat and how they managed to include it into their business, especially if their target group is 20-25+