Snapchat Marketing for Beginners

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Snapchat for Beginners

Snapchat marketing, is it worth it?

Snapchat is a popular social media platform with millions of active users daily within the UK. The mobile application has many marketing options available for businesses of all sizes. Even though Snapchat has such a large user base, mainly consisting of people under the age of 30, many people don’t have much knowledge about it, so the aim of this post is to teach you how the application works, the marketing methods, the pros and cons and more.

What is Snapchat?

Snapchat is a mobile app for IOS and Android devices with over 16 million users in the UK alone in 2018, the majority of whom are aged between 13 and 30. The application has multiple purposes which include sharing, photos, videos and texts. The main thing that makes Snapchat different from other apps is the fact that the message will disappear after it has been seen, unless it is saved in the chat.

Another popular feature that sets Snapchat apart from competitors is its story feature which allows users to share photos and videos to the people they have on Snapchat for 24 hours before it is automatically deleted. Users are able to add friends and family, however Snapchat stories are able to changed to public viewing which is typically used by influencers.



Any small business can create a custom filter which allows you to target a specific area and share your logo or trademark. It is fairly easy to create a filter as you are able to choose from a range of templates, then add your logo/trademark. Alternatively you can design one in Photoshop and then upload that as your filter.

An example of the filter in action was at The Hoopsfix All-Star Classic basketball event that took place in Brixton. The promoters wanted to bring more awareness to the event so they went to Snapchat. They created the filter to cover 81,000 square feet around Brixton. They had this up for 25 hours and it cost them roughly £22.50 to run this form of advert. Within the time,91,346 people viewed the filter and 389 people actually used it. This meant that every hour, they were getting roughly 3,600 people viewing their filters and for each hour they were paying roughly £0.90.

How does it work?

Snapchat is simple to use. When you open the application you are presented with the camera from your phone, which allows you to quickly snap a picture. If you swipe to the right on the screen you are presented with your messages, which is where people are able to text, send pictures and call their friends. You can view stories and discover new people by swiping left on the camera section – if you place adverts on Snapchat, this is where they will be found. They would either be in the discovery area or when a user is going through their friends’ stories, the advert will pop up in between.

#Snapchat claims over 10 billion views per day, find out how your business can take advantage of this! Share on X

Who can you target?

The application is mainly used by the younger generation. In 2018 there were roughly 16.2 million users within the UK and 5 million (31%) of those users were between the ages 18-24,Compared to other social media platforms, Snapchat reaches the most 18-24 year olds. Facebook has the closest numbers to Snapchat, with 4.5 million 18-24 year olds. This is 1.7% less than 2017, because younger people are starting to move to newer platforms like Snapchat. While Instagram is becoming increasingly popular, it is forecast that Snapchat will remain the more popular app in the coming years.

Examples of Engaging Brands-

T-Mobile is one of the more popular advertisers on the platform, advertising through Snapchat using the discover tab and through filters. The way the filters work is they add effects to the photo. Snapchat is known for its range of filters and T-Mobile decided to optimise on this by creating filters of their own. These filters don’t just add effects but they also have branding which promotes the company to users’ friends, family and followers once a picture has been shared with the filter.

Another company that has taken advantage of Snapchat is Adidas. Instead of just creating a filter or a video, it created a small game in the Snapchat app, Snappables, to engage the younger target market. The game promotes a pair of football boots, and the aim is to develop as many skills as possible and gain as many points.

What is an Influencer?

An Influencer is a person who has a large following and can reach a large audience through their posts. Through their posts they are able to persuade their followers to purchase products they promote because their audience trusts them. On Snapchat, influencers are able to entertain their viewers through showing them videos and pictures from their daily life. Occasionally companies pay these influencers to promote their product. The influencer will do a picture or video of the product and will attach a link so all the viewer has to do is swipe up and they will be brought to your page.

Organic vs Advertising

Organic marketing is getting results through creativity and time and doesn’t cost any money. When it comes to using organic marketing on Snapchat, it is difficult to get your brand seen  as people usually only add or follow people they know, this is why Influencers have many followers on Snapchat as they are followed from other platforms.The only way organic could work is if Snapchat decided to put you on the discover page, which is difficult and could only happen if the user has shown their interest in similar Snapchat stories.

Using paid advertisements to get your products/services out to possible customers is much more effective than organic marketing. The reason for this is because you are able to choose the target market to those who are most likely to have an interest in what you are offering.

Different ways of Advertising on Snapchat

Discover – Advertising on the discovery page puts you at the top of the list. When a user goes to check their friends’ stories they will see your advert at the top of the discovery section. If it’s something that interests them, they will click on it.

Web view/Deep link – These are adverts which contain a link to a landing page on your website.

App Install Ad – This form of advertising is very similar to web view/deep link – the only difference is that instead of redirecting you to a website, it takes the user directly to the app store/play store so they can download instantly.

Lenses/Geofilters – Snapchat is known for its wide range of geofilters and lenses. These allow users to edit their pictures in a fun way. Around one third of users a day play with the lenses and 40-60% of users in locations with Geofilters will use them.

Video Ads – These videos typically tend to be movie trailers, but they can be useful to share clips of your products/services in action. On Snapchat, over 10 billion videos are watched per day which is a 350% increase from 2015, showing that videos on Snapchat are getting much more popular.

Snappables – Snappables are a new feature on Snapchat. They are augmented reality games built within the app. The games are interactive and allow the user to use movement in their face to play the game which can be entertaining. These types of adverts are more interactive and exciting for the user than just a photo or video. This is a new way of advertising so not many companies have taken advantage of this yet.

What is Snapchat Good For?

  • Advertising to younger audiences aged 13-24
  • 58% of college students are more likely purchase a product if they were offered a discount code on Snapchat
  • It is another way for you to interact with customers
  • There are multiple options to advertise on Snapchat
  • It’s a fun way to engage with your target audience and can get your followers to easily send you images
  • You can add personality to your brand and show your followers that you are more than a business
  • Show behind the scenes of your business which will give your followers more of an insight into your company
  • Prove that you are up to trends and you are adapting with the times

What is Bad About Snapchat?

  • The only way to get noticed on Snapchat is through advertising
  • It can be expensive when advertising, especially if you are doing Geofilters in large spaces
  • Video adverts are only 10 seconds, which doesn’t give you much time to get your point across
  • Adverts can easily be avoided. Unlike Instagram and Facebook, adverts might not be seen, unless it is an advert that appears whilst a user is going through their Snapchat stories.

How to monitor progress of your Advert

Snapchat has an analytics feature for businesses and influencers. All you need is 2,700 followers to get the feature. With this you are able to see total story views in the past week, month, and year. You can also see how many daily viewers you have and the average time a user watches it for. It also goes into more detail where you can see the average age group, gender of the viewers and region. All this information is extremely useful as you can see if the people viewing are your target market group. And if you were to get an influencer to promote your products/services then you would be able to know beforehand if the group watching will be suitable for what you are selling.




Advertising Filters

The first thing you are asked when creating a advert on Snapchat is the audience you would like, including age, gender, language income and more. These types of filters allow you to advertise to the exact market you would like. There is even an option to target people based on previous purchases, items they have watched and places they have been.

Next is the budget. Snapchat needs to know how much you are willing to spend on your advertisements. The more you spend the more people it will reach. This section also has a goals area; here you can choose if you want things such as traffic driven to your site, grow awareness or increase the amount of installs of an app.


Snapchat could be useful to market your small business, principally because of the Geofilters. This would be great if your business wants to sell locally and target the younger generation. When marketing on Snapchat you have numerous options of how you would like to market your product so can choose what’s best for your product/services.

If you are looking into using Snapchat to grow organically, remember it will take a lot of time and effort to establish yourself.

There are benefits of using Snapchat many of which you can’t achieve on other social media platform. An example of this is the audience on Snapchat, no other social media platform has so many 13-30 year olds.

Another great part of Snapchat is the analytics. It offers you so much detail which can help you get an understanding of the type of people you want to filter your adverts towards.

Overall, Snapchat is a great place to advertise if your target market groups are under 30 years old, the reason for this is because the application is mainly used by people between the ages of 13-30.

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