Snapchat: Use Short-Lived Images to Create a Long-Term Revenue Stream


I was just reading an article about the cable news ratings war for second place. (Fox News is firmly established in the number one position.) CNN had been trailing MSNBC, but has recently reversed its fortunes and is now on a winning streak.

Critical in this battle is which network wins the highly coveted younger demographics and CNN is doing well there too.

This is also why people are anxious for Snapchat to go public. It has somewhere between 100-200 million users and kills in the 18-34 year old demographic. In fact, some 45 percent are in the 18-24 year old group.

Build brand awareness

This is the same reason many should consider adding Snapchat to their social media marketing lineup. Small Businesses that sell to this group need to put it high on their to-do lists. If you can make Millennials and younger consumers customers today, you can establish brand loyalty and keep them onboard for a nice long ride.

Snapchat burst onto the social media scene as a private personal photo sharing platform. It’s claim to fame was that photos disappeared after 10 seconds. They added video, with the same super-short shelf life. The app also allows for on-screen doodling and chat sessions.

While those time constraints seemed to move it out of the marketing arena, many businesses have found ways to take advantage of the “immediacy” that accompanies an image that is here one moment and gone the next. For example, a New York City yogurt shop used it to get coupons to buyers. They had to grab their coupons via Snapchat as they were about to check out and the discount could be anything from 16 percent off to free.

After all, a segment of retail depends on the “impulse” buy. Snapchat is essentially “impulse” social media. Wed those two worlds and you can have a major winner on your hands.

Tap customer creativity

Jurassic Snap chatWith the doodling feature, you can conduct “art contests.”  Gary Vaynerchuk, the CEO of VaynerMedia, had users transform their selfies into scenes from Jurassic Park using the doodling feature. (By the way, although images disappear, you can save them for posterity via a screen capture.)

Not long ago Snapchat added another feature: Snapchat Stories. A story is a string of images and/or videos that have a life of 24 hours. I think we’re seeing Snapchat groom itself to make the service more accommodating to commercilization monetization.

If you’re trying to create buzz around an event, for example, creating a Snapchat story can be a good way to get some eyeballs. The NBA used the Stories feature to capture a day of activities leading up to Kevin Durant’s acceptance of the MVP award. The goal was to get people involved so they would tune in and watch the ceremony live.

Snapchat is evolving. The same is true with the relationship between businesses and Snapchat. Brainstorm with your crew – and be sure to include younger users of the social media platform – and occasionally search online to find new ways small businesses are using Snapchat.

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