Snapchat for Business: What You Need to Know

By Ronita Mohan - September 26, 2019
5 mins read time
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Snapchat, like so many other social platforms began as a channel for friends to connect with each other. Now, it’s so much more — including a business opportunity. With its unique audience segment, Snapchat should be an important part of your brand’s content marketing strategy.

Millennials and Gen Z are the most active audience on Snapchat and if your business is targeting those demographics, Snapchat is definitely the place to be. Snapchat fosters a light-hearted and intimate tone, making it ideal for businesses trying to create personal connections with their audience.

Once your marketing team joins Snapchat to promote your business, there are a few things you need to keep in mind.

Post Consistently on Snapchat

When creating a social media marketing plan, keep your target audience and ultimate plan for Snapchat in mind.

When planning, ensure that posting on Snapchat consistently is a key part of reaching your audience.  Not only does consistent posting show your brand is active on Snapchat, but it keeps you relevant — remember, Snapchat stories disappear after 24 hours. If you haven’t posted a couple of times within that time period, your account might as well be dead.

However, consistent posting does not mean going overboard and posting too much — limit your daily Snaps to between 4-5 posts. Beyond that, users may not see value in your posts. And avoid posting all at once; that strategy isn’t going to do you any favors because all of your Snaps all disappear at the same time.

Instead, post every few hours so there will always be some content available on your channel.

Optimize Your Snapchat Content

The biggest mistake you can make when using Snapchat for business is to simply repost content from your other channels to your Snapchat. Where is the value addition to your Snapchat followers if they can see the same content by following you on Instagram or Facebook? Your content needs to be different and engaging, but more importantly, it needs to be tailored for the specific audience using the platform.

Use Snapchat geo-filter templates to create consistent, customizable posts for your channel that will set you apart from competitors, while being fun and engaging.

Go behind the scenes to give your followers an intimate view into your company. Or, give them some interactive AR content to boost engagement. Make product or discount announcements on Snapchat or share a special Snapchat-only offer with your followers.

The key to creating Snapchat content is to make it unique — this is the best way to ensure that users will head to your Snapchat in droves instead of languishing on other channels.

Engage With Followers

Posting is a great way to attract followers, but it’s still quite a passive method. You need to actively use Snapchat to connect with users.

Make sure you check your Snapchat stories for comments from followers so you can reply to them and hold conversations.

The same goes for direct messages. Check on those regularly and make sure you’re notified every time you get a new message so your followers know you are always ready to speak with them.

Now, this may seem a bit of a waste of time—Snapchat comments aren’t as public as on platforms like Facebook or Twitter. But, it’s still worthwhile to spend time replying. Followers will be excited to get a direct reply from a business account, and your engagement is likely to turn them into loyal customers. Or, followers may become so excited at the prospect of a brand replying to them that they share the news on their Snapchat channels and thus increase your followers.

It takes time to reply to people on Snapchat — especially since Snapchat isn’t completely automated like other channels, but the advantages of doing so are immense.

Cross-Promote Your Snapchat Channel

We’ve mentioned that you shouldn’t repurpose content from other channels as Snapchat posts. However, that doesn’t mean that your Snapchat channel has to be completely separate from your social media marketing strategy.

Let your followers on other channels know about your presence on Snapchat. Include your Snap code as a post on your other channels and in your newsletters. Additionally, share a teaser clip from a Snapchat post and ask people to follow you.

Let people know that you are on Snapchat whenever you can to  grow your following.

Snapchat Ads

Unlike other platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, Snapchat advertising hasn’t picked up with marketers. Snapchat has been much slower to roll out advertising in general, and their options are still limited. But that doesn’t mean that investing in Snapchat ads isn’t worth it.

Because of the popularity of the platform among its users, pinning a Snap to the top of user’s feeds will make them more likely to watch it than they would ads on other channels.

Keeping the Snap short improves chances of it being seen, especially with the web view ad, which includes a swipe-up option to click on a link. But, longer form ads with a call-to-action can attract views if the content is relevant and engaging, too.

Businesses can also opt to sponsor lenses and geo-filters — these are used extensively by Snapchat users and are worth the investment.

Though Snapchat advertising is comparatively in its infancy, it can be a worthwhile exercise to engage with audiences and increase your followers.

Snapchat Takeovers

Host a takeover on your Snapchat channel and you can tap into a whole new audience segment. Takeovers are a great way of diversifying your content as well.

Reach out to a relevant expert, influencer, micro-influencer or engaged customer in your field and create a strategy for them to take over your account for a day or a few hours.

Alternatively, reach out to potential partners and offer your services for a takeover of their account, which is also a great way to reach new audience profiles.

UGC On Snapchat

Businesses can massively improve engagement by running a user generated content campaign. Ask users to share photos or videos of themselves interacting with your product or service, and you can repost them to your channel. A UGC campaign is also a great way to promote contests on Snapchat and beyond.Plan out your UGC campaign and contest in advance and you will see your follower numbers and engagement improve.

Key Takeaways

Not so long ago, Snapchat was meant to be a platform used by teenagers to chat with each other. But now, Snapchat has become an important social media resource for businesses.

  • Create consistent content for your Snapchat channel and ensure you capitalize on the 24 hour-limit imposed on snaps.
  • Optimize your Snapchat content for the channel — don’t repost content from other vertical-content channels onto Snapchat.
  • Don’t be passive on Snapchat. Engage with comments and DMs on the channel, even if others can’t see them. It will improve your reach.
  • Let followers on other platforms know that you are on Snapchat and considering investing in Snapchat advertising.
  • Host takeovers, or takeover someone else’s account, and hold UGC campaigns to improve reach and engagement.

Snapchat for business has its advantages for the savvy marketer. If you aren’t on Snapchat yet, now is the time to join the channel.

Ronita Mohan

Ronita Mohan is a content marketer at Venngage, the online infographic template and design platform. She enjoys writing productivity, design, social media, and the digital world. She is also interested in pop culture and diversity, which she blogs about regularly.

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