Can Snapchat Really Work for Marketing?


Desperate for results, marketers are turning to social media tools in droves. They are handing over valuable campaigns to platforms that are providing new ways to build awareness and drive results.

And guess what? They aren’t paying a premium for that space.

Examples of these social media tools run from the sponsored content on Twitter to interstitial ads on Instagram. And options are multiplying. So are the results. But do you know who the newest kid in town is? Who is providing space for all kinds of cool things you’d like to do as a marketer?

It’s Snapchat.

Yes, the mobile app on your smartphone that allows users to send images that self-destruct shortly after being viewed.

The idea comes from an interesting aspect of behavioral marketing: Consumers are more likely to pay attention when they are under pressure of quantity limitations or time restrictions. Think “Cyber Monday and five MacBooks on 50% discount, with only three hours to take advantage of the offer!”

You get the idea.

And this is where your campaign could benefit. Not only you could keep your target audience engaged but also increase sales. Snapchat is also a great way of tapping into an elusive market, with an affluent audience, tired of tweeting.

Who’s Already Using Snapchat?

Snapchat provides urgency, with powerful content that prompts quick action. Snapchat users have a few seconds to react, so they may be more impulsive and willing to interact to a Snapchat marketing campaign, as opposed to using other image-sharing platforms to do the same.

Here are the brands gaining traction through Snapchat marketing.


Food-delivery service GrubHub offered free grub to customers through its week-long scavenger hunt. Every day, the company posted a new story on the platform and invited customers to take part in the challenge for a chance to win $ 50 of free food. Consumers were prompted to send a snap back to GrubHub, and 10 winners were announced each day.


The activity helped GrubHub accumulate more followers on Snapchat and reach a younger demographic of diners. One of the firm’s core audiences is university and college students, and they are socializing on mobile, so the move made a lot of sense for GrubHub’s marketing.

Rebecca Minkoff

Rebecca Minkoff made a Snapchat account for debuting her spring 2014 collection, just moments before it hit the runway.

CEO of the company Uri Minkoff told Mashable that consumers are a part of the fashion week. The consumer has a say in the Rebecca Minkoff brand, so exclusive images of the latest collection was one of the special perks consumers (even those who couldn’t attend the show) received.

Snapchat for Marketers

Snapchat is already driving engagement, so imagine the benefits for your marketing campaign.

Here are some ways to use Snapchat as a marketer.

Snapchat stories

The stories feature can be used to send an image-based or video-based story to consumers. If you have a lot going on behind the scenes (upcoming products, product development, etc.), you can offer an exclusive insight to your Snapchat followers.

Create different stories over several days, each of which provides a better idea of your company’s offering. When a story finishes, send followers to your landing page and other social media channels. That keeps them interested leading up to future announcements.

Sweepstakes and contests

People love testing their luck in games of chance, and Snapchat is ideal for that. Create a campaign where a random winner is picked among your contacts. Send the winner a code that can be redeemed for a gift. Create urgency by mentioning the prize can only be claimed on the day the snap is sent.

Likewise, you can help drive immediate traffic to your campaign with contests. Promote contests on all your social channels, and create fleeting moments with a sentence like “the first 10 who send us a video of…”

Promotional videos

Marketers are already using Instagram Videos and Vine, but Snapchat clips have an expiration date. Create a video showing a promotional message—or a voice message featuring your brand or products.

At some stage on the video, show users how to obtain an offer, or ask them to mention your store to drive traffic offline. Because consumers will be actively paying attention to your video due to its limited availability, that strategy will generate sales as well as increase your brand’s awareness.

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With so many possibilities, Snapchat could be useful for your marketing strategy, allowing you to foster relationships and raise excitement about your campaign.

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