Snapchat is a social platform that is generating buzz these days. From big influencers to small businesses, everyone is shifting their focus to Snapchat.
Today, there are many platforms available that marketers use to promote and grow their business. While most of these platforms are giving positive ROI, a smart marketer always looks for emerging platforms that will yield great results for their business.
Snapchat is one such platform. It’s already big but it is still an untouched platform by many marketers. But now it’s time for you to consider Snapchat as an important platform in your social media marketing strategy.
According to Convince & Convert, Snapchat has more users than Twitter, Pinterest, and LinkedIn. This highly famous platform among millennials is growing fast and many big brands are taking advantage of it.
If your business is not on Snapchat, you need to get on it now. But here comes a problem:
Many brands and business are on Snapchat but they have no idea whether Snapchat is helping them or not. Such businesses are failing to measure their Snapchat marketing ROI. And most of them aren’t even able to drive engagement on their snaps.
This is why I’ve created this guide. In this guide, I’ll show you how to use Snapchat for business. This guide will take you from the most basic to highly advanced stuff on Snapchat marketing. You’ll discover how big brands and businesses are using Snapchat and how you can replicate them.
This Snapchat marketing guide is over 5K words long and was exclusively written for you so please don’t share it!
Ready to rock your business on Snapchat? Let’s begin.
Here are some stats you need to know about the platform:
1. Over 150 million people use Snapchat
Snapchat surpassed Twitter and over 150 million people use it. As a marketer, you already know how hard it is to grow your business on Twitter. But that’s not the case with Snapchat. You can grow a targeted audience on Snapchat and turn them into loyal fans.
2. Snapchat is the most used social platform among 12 to 24-year-olds
If you want to reach this demographic, Snapchat is the best way to do it. Snapchat has an adoption rate of 72% greater than Instagram (66%).
3. Snapchatters watch over 10 billion videos and spend an average of 20-35 minutes on the platform
Snapchat is all about attention and storytelling. If you succeed in telling great stories on Snapchat, you win.
Here are some more stats that you need to know. Looking at these stats, all I can say is that you need to jump on Snapchat now because it’s about to get crowded there.
So, it’s clear that Snapchat is a platform that cannot be ignored by marketers. If your business’s target audience consists of people between the age of 12-35, you must start marketing on Snapchat.
And if you’re totally unfamiliar with the platform, don’t panic. I’ll explain all the basics to you so you know how Snapchat works.
Snapchat Basics for Beginners
Snapchat is not like any other platform. It has a unique blend in it and its interface is very different and sometimes confusing to people.
But getting started with Snapchat is simple.
Snapchat is an app that allows you take pictures and record 10-second videos. You can make your pictures and videos more fun and creative by adding filters, text, and stickers.
Anything you post on Snapchat stays for only 24 hours and then it disappears.
Some Important Terms In Snapchat
Before you start using Snapchat, you need to know some terms used in the app.
Snap – A snap can be a picture or video. Snaps can be sent to your friends. Once your friends open a snap, it disappears after 10 seconds. But you can replay a snap once.
Filter – Filters are what makes Snapchat so great. Filters change regularly based on holidays, location and special events.
Stories – This feature made Snapchat more awesome than it already was. If you want to send a snap to, let’s say – 50 people, you would have to manually send it to each one of them. But stories made this task easy. You can send snaps to your story and your story can be viewed by your friends. Stories disappear after 24 hours.
Memories – Memories backs up your snaps and stories. They can be made public or private and you can post your older snaps and stories from your memories.
Lenses – Aah, I love them! Lenses allow you to add face effects to your snap. The famous dog face selfies that you see everywhere are nothing but lenses. You can make animal faces, look like a monster or a watermelon. Yes, a watermelon!
Snapcode – Every user has a unique snapcode that can be shared to let people add you on Snapchat. Your snapcode can also be personalized by adding your selfie. To add me on Snapchat, scan my Snapcode given below.
Snapchat score – Snapchat score is based on the number of snaps you’ve sent and received. So, the more snaps you send and receive, the higher your Snapchat score.
Geofilters – These are location based filters that are available when you turn on your location. You can also create your own geofilter.
Chat – You can instantly send messages on Snapchat using chat. What’s the catch? Messages disappear once you view them. So you’re thinking you’ll just take a screenshot of your chats, huh? Well, the user will be notified when you take a screenshot of the chat. Not just chat, if you take a screenshot of their snaps, they’ll get notified. Oh, Snap!
Discover – Discover is the section where you can view the stories of top brands and publishers. These publishers are limited and create content for Snapchat. You can find their stories by clicking on the Discover button.
Stickers – There are many stickers available on Snapchat. Stickers make your snap better. You can use emojis and many different stickers.
Bitmojis –Bitmoji is an emoji app that provides a ton of emojis. You can create your own character and use it in many different ways. What’s cool about this is that Snapchat allows you to connect your bitmoji with the app. This means that you can add bitmojis on your snaps. You can also send Bitmojis in chat.
Scissors – Scissors is the latest feature of Snapchat. You can cut out a part of your snap and save it. This saved cut out can be later used in your snaps.
Groups – You can create groups and add people on Snapchat. Just like chats, messages in a group also disappear. Snapchat lets you add 16 people in a group.
Paintbrush – This feature allows you paint on your memories.
Setting Up Your Account On Snapchat
Let me walk you through the process of setting up a Snapchat account.
1. Download Snapchat and open it.
2. Now, you’ll have to create an account. Click on sign up.
3. Enter your name and birthday and continue.
4. It’s time to pick a username. Pick a username that is easy to remember so that people can add you if you tell them your username. Also, choose a username that you don’t have to change it frequently. If you’re setting up an account for your business, choose a username that can be used for a long time.
5. The last step is to set a password. Your password should be at least 8 characters.
Voila! You’re on Snapchat now.
So this is how the interface of the app looks like. This might be confusing to you but don’t worry, I’ll explain everything.
This is the main area where you take pictures and record video. You can see a search button at the top.
On the top right, the icon that looks like a lightning bolt indicates whether the flash is on or off. If it’s off, you’ll see a cross mark with the lightning icon.
Just next to it is the button from which you can switch between the front camera and the rear camera.
The ghost icon at the top left will show you the profile. You can also go to your profile by sliding down. If you have your bitmoji connected to Snapchat, you’ll see your bitmoji icon instead of a ghost.
Here you can see your name, username, snapcode and your Snapchat score.
The added me button shows the names of people who have added you on Snapchat.
You can also add friends by clicking on the Add Friends button. Here you’ll find different ways you can use to add someone. You can add someone on Snapchat using their username, snapcode, contacts and by location. You can also share your username with people.
On the My Friends section, you can find all your friends. There is also a tab where you can see all your contacts. Contacts who have Snapchat are shown separately and you can add them easily.
At the bottom left is the chat button. You can click on it and go to the chat section. You can also do this by sliding to the left.
At the bottom right is the stories button. You can go to the stories section by sliding to the right.
Here, you can also see your story and its stats. Click on the three dots and you’ll see how many people viewed your story (purple eye). If anyone took a screenshot of your snap, a green icon is displayed below the purple eye.
Now at the center, there are two buttons. The big one is capture button with which you can take pictures. Holding it will start recording a video. To record a video, you’ll have to keep holding this button. The videos that are recorded are 10 seconds only.
Just below it is the button that leads you to the memories section. You can also go there by sliding up.
Top Accounts To Follow On Snapchat
As a marketer, it is important for you to look at what others are doing on Snapchat. There are some people you need to follow because their stories are just awesome.
Here are some Snapchat accounts you should be following. These accounts will give you some inspiration and will improve your Snapchat game.
DJ Khaled – @djkhaled305
The Major Key. You will find his name everywhere when someone talks about Snapchat. It’s because his snaps are gold. He shares life lessons, work life and him spending time with his son.
His snaps usually contain some mantras like “I got us”, “another one” and more. If you’re on Snapchat, you can’t miss his snaps.
Gary Vaynerchuk – @garyvee
Gary Vaynerchuk is all in on Snapchat. His snaps are full of hustle. And speaking of hustle, you will hear him say this word a lot. He also sometimes shares short clips that are not but motivating.
If you want some motivation to get up and do some work, follow Gary on Snapchat.
Justin Wu – @hackapreneur
Justin’s snaps are a mix of his work life and growth hacking tips. He is the founder of growth.ly and shares his growth hacking knowledge on Snapchat. You should really follow him for some advice that will help you grow your business.
He also takes part in takeovers with people who provide valuable information you shouldn’t miss.
Cyrene Quiamco – @cyreneq
Get ready to see some colorful doodled snaps. Cyrene is a Snapchat influencer and creates Snapchat content for brands. Her snaps are really fun and creative. Follow her if you want to fuel your creativity.
Justin Kan was the co-founder of Twitch which was later acquired by Amazon for $970 million. On Snapchat, he helps entrepreneurs by sharing helpful tips. You can also see him enjoying at parties and a lot more.
Other Important Accounts To Follow
You cannot easily find someone on Snapchat. And as a marketer, you need more followers to grow your audience.
There are many ways to increase your Snapchat followers and I’ve mentioned all of them that work in getting more people to add you on Snapchat.
1. Include your snapcode on other platforms
Promoting your Snapchat account on other social platforms is the most simple way to get more people add you on Snapchat. If you have a good presence on say – Facebook or Twitter, you can use that to get followers on Snapchat.
Download your snapcode from the Snapchat website and upload this as your profile picture. This really helps.
2. Add a story on Instagram and ask people to add you on Snapchat
This just another cross-promotion method that works if you have a good number of followers on other social platforms.
Instagram stories are just like Snapchat and asking your followers to add you on Snapchat is a great way to get some followers.
3. Add your snapchat username in your email signature
If you send a lot of emails, this method will get you some followers for sure. Include your snapchat username in your email signature and you’ll see the results.
4. Email your list
Tell your email list that you’re on Snapchat. Don’t forget to add your snapcode in your email so that people can save it and add you quickly.
5. Import phone numbers from your CRM or email list and add those people on Snapchat
Pretty smart, right? Your CRM and email list can help you getting Snapchat followers if you add them via their phone number.
6. Ask people to do shoutouts
If you’ve made a few friends on Snapchat, ask them to do a shoutout. This will help you get some followers.
But nothing is better than an influencer doing a shoutout for you. It all happens if you manage good relationships with influencers. If you know Snapchat influencers, ask them to do a shoutout.
7. Add your snapcode in your business card
Snapcode is the QR code of our generation. If you meet different people in events or conferences, give them your business card with your snapcode on it.
If they are on Snapchat, they’ll probably add you.
8. Promote Snapchat in your content
You can promote your snapchat account in your content. You can include a small CTA and ask readers to check you out on Snapchat.
This works really well if you get high traffic to your website.
9. Include Snapchat info on About and Contact pages of your website
Having your Snapchat username or snapcode on about and contact pages of your website will help you get more followers.
You can also use this growth hack on your contact page by adding:
“Want to get an instant reply? Snap us now!”
People who want to reach out to you will add you on Snapchat to contact you. But make sure you respond quickly.
10. Paid promotion on Facebook and Instagram
If you’re really serious about Snapchat and ready to invest some money, do some paid promotion on Facebook and Instagram.
Choose your target audience and test it out.
11. Use Ghostcodes app
Ghostcodes is an app that lets you discover Snapchat users. You can find users based on your industry. People can download your snapcode and add you if they want and you can do the same.
To get the most out of this app, download the snap codes of everyone in your industry and add them.
Most of them will add you back.
12. Do paid shoutouts on Fiverr
This one is not as effective as other methods mentioned above but it’s worth a try. If you can find someone in your industry who is offering snapchat shoutouts on Fiverr, try it out.
These shout outs will surely get you followers on Snapchat. But if you want highly targeted followers, you will have to find the right person.
How To Create Engaging Content On Snapchat
Snapchat is a fun platform and people don’t want to be sold on Snapchat. If you think being professional on Snapchat just like you are on Facebook will help you, then you’re out.
This is why many marketers are afraid of Snapchat.
But now that many big brands are on Snapchat, many small businesses are stepping in.
What I’ve seen is that many marketers don’t know how to create engaging content on Snapchat.
You want your followers to view your stories regularly.
And what’s even more important is that your followers should interact with your stories. How to do that?
Here are some great ways to create engaging content on Snapchat:
1. Offer discounts and coupon codes exclusive to your Snapchat followers
Make your followers feel special by offering discounts or coupon codes. Your discount and coupon codes should only be for your Snapchat followers.
2. Share what’s going on behind-the-scenes
Creating a personal connection with your audience builds more trust and loyalty. Showing them what’s happening behind-the-scenes is a great way to keep your audience engaged with your content.
Many big brands do this and you can do it too.
3. Do regular takeovers
Takeovers really work. You can take advantage of this when you’re in a conference or an event.
4. Be fun and creative
Snapchat is all about fun. Being professional on Snapchat will NEVER work. Big brands on Snapchat put out fun content that people actually want to see.
5. Leverage all Snapchat features
Utilize all the Snapchat features. You have stickers, lenses, paintbrush, bitmojis and scissors. Be creative and try to make your snaps cool by using all these features.
If you follow these 5 tips, you will able to create content that not only engages your audience but also builds more trust.
Snapchat Marketing Strategy
Marketing on Snapchat is not as easy as it sounds. You need to create content that your audience wants to see.
Your content should make your audience take some action. And to do this, you need a strategy. A strategy that will help you keep your new and existing fans engaged.
And here’s how you can do that:
1. When someone adds you on Snapchat, send them a welcome snap
Whether you’re a local store or an online business, send your new followers a welcome snap. This way your followers will realize that you care about them.
If you’re sending a welcome snap to your new followers, you better hook them up. Think of it as the first impression you have on your followers.
You can write a short message and welcome your followers.
You can also create a 10-second video of you welcoming them. Or you can show around your office and welcome your followers. There are countless ways to do this.
Try to make your snap as personalized as you can to provide them the best experience. Use their name in the snap and make them feel special.
2. Send them an offer
You can offer them a discount, coupon code, free trial or anything else. Whatever you think will make them buy your product, offer it.
If you’re a marketer, you already know how email marketing works. And I’m sure you also know how drip campaigns work.
You can do that on Snapchat but here, you’ll have to be fun and authentic. Just like a drip email campaign, send offers to your followers.
Send a welcome snap on the day they add you. The next day, show your products to them. And so on, make them buy your product.
Your snaps should tell a story, not sell them the product. If you’re a good storyteller, you’re about to have a good time on Snapchat.
3. How-to tutorials on Snapchat
Show how to use your product. Sephora does it the best. They use product demos as a way to attract people in buying their product.
Many other fashion brands are doing this on Snapchat. That’s why you should follow them and learn.
You can do the same with your product. If you’re a software company, show people how they can use the different features available.
Share one tip daily in your story or set a day in which you will only share tips about your product.
Measuring Your Snapchat Marketing ROI
The reason why many marketers are not using Snapchat is that there is no way to measure your success. Another reason is that many marketers are too lazy to measure their Snapchat ROI because it requires manual work.
But that’s not true. Yes, measuring your Snapchat marketing ROI is challenging but it’s not impossible.
You can do this by measuring the activities of your stories and snaps you sent to people.
So how do you measure your ROI on Snapchat?
You can do this by measuring three important metrics:
1. Total Story Views
How to measure: Subtract the total number of views of your last snap from the total number of views of your first snap.
Measuring the total views of your stories is an important metric. This helps you understand whether your followers are interested in what you’re posting.
The difference in the total views of your first snap and last snap shows how many people are dropping off. If people are losing interest in your snaps, this number will be high.
You should aim for having a low drop off rate. To keep this difference low, your first snap needs to be fantastic.
If your first snap is boring, people will not be interested in viewing what you’re posting throughout the day.
2. Total Screenshots
How to measure: Divide the total screenshots of your snap from the total views of that snap.
If people are taking screenshots of your snaps, it means they’re interested in your stories. Whether it’s a snap offering discount coupons or a beautiful image, your snaps should be good enough that people take a screenshot of it.
And you can do even more if you measure this. Make a list of people who have taken a screenshot of your snap. Then you can send these people personalized offers and make them love you even more.
In my template, you can add the number of people who’ve taken a screenshot of your snap. If the same person has taken screenshots of your different stories, you can add it in the spreadsheet thus keeping track of your real Snapchat fans.
3. Story Completion Rate
How to measure: Divide the total views in the last snaps from the total views in the first snap.
Set a goal of story completions. This makes measuring your success even easier. This metric is important because it shows you how many people are engaged with your content.
It also helps in identifying what type of content is working so you can focus more on that.
4. Direct Messages Views
How to measure: Divide the total number of messages you’ve sent from the total number of people who have viewed it.
If you’re sending direct messages to your followers, you need to keep a track of their performance too.
You need to measure the number of people who’ve opened your message/snap. And just like screenshot tracking, make a list of people who’ve opened your message. And also those, who have not viewed your message. Because you can create content tailored for them so that they are interested in you. But don’t worry, it’s all included in the free template.
5. Snapchat Referral Traffic
Sharing your website to Snapchatters? You better use a link shortener and measure how many people visited your website.
Bitly is a good URL shortener you can use. So now whenever you share your website URL, create a short unique link for Snapchat and share that link.
Since you cannot actually click on a link on Snapchat, the user has to manually enter the URL in the browser. So make your URLs short and simple so that people can easily type it and visit your website.
6. Where Are Your Followers Coming From
Keep track of how people added you on Snapchat. Is it from your username, snapcode or phone number?
Having a list of your followers that shows how they added you is very helpful. You can then focus on the most used way people are using to add you on Snapchat.
7. Sales Generated From Snapchat
Tracking your engagement isn’t just enough. You are marketing on Snapchat to promote your business and generate more sales.
So if you’re not measuring the sales generated from Snapchat, you’re wasting your time. You can do this by tracking the use of promotional codes while purchases.
If you create unique promo codes for Snapchat (which you should do), you can track sales generated through Snapchat.
These are all the metrics you need to measure if you’re marketing on Snapchat. You can add different metrics depending on the vertical you’re marketing in.
Snapchat Marketing For Restaurants
Here’s what I think about Snapchat:
It’s one of the best social platforms for Restaurants. And if you leverage Snapchat for your restaurant business, you hit gold!
If I had a restaurant, I would totally focus on Snapchat to grow the business. So if you’re a restaurant owner, get on Snapchat now.
There are some really great ways you can use Snapchat to grow your restaurant business. Here are some creative ideas that will work for you:
If you have no idea how to use Snapchat for your restaurant business, start from these ideas.
1. Snap Entrance
Print out your snapcode and put it at the entrance of your restaurant. Put it on your doors so that when people enter or leave your restaurant, they can scan your snapcode and add you on Snapchat.
2. Snap Tables
Stick your snapcodes on every table of your restaurant. Don’t just simply put your snapcode on the tables. Include a strong call-to-action that makes them follow you.
Here are some examples –
3. Snap Menu
See where I’m going?
Add your snapcode in your menu. Don’t want to make your menu fancy by adding a snapcode? I understand.
You can simply create a new menu specially designed to help you get more followers on Snapchat.
And here’s a smart idea for you:
Keep this menu for millennials only. As you already read above, more young people are into Snapchat. So hand them over this menu and they’ll be surprised to see you being creative.
Have your waiter say “Here’s your snap menu” when he gives the menu. Don’t worry about the rest. Most of them will add you on Snapchat.
4. The “Snap” Waiter
Your restaurant wants to thrive on Snapchat?
Your waiters will have to put in some work. Your waiters can help you get more followers if they asked customers to snap what they’ve ordered.
No, don’t be creepy. Just do it like “Would like to snapchat this to someone who should come here and enjoy this meal?”.
Again, target millennials. Because people in the age group of 12-35 use Snapchat a lot.
5. Snap their experience
You can snap their experience in your restaurant by recording a video and sharing it with your followers.
This will most likely make your current followers come and check you out. Also, your customers will add you on Snapchat if you’re featuring them in your account.
It’s a win-win situation.
6. The “Recommend Us” Snap
Just like your customers snapping their food, you can ask them to share it with others and recommend your restaurant.
7. Provide Special Discount To Snapchat Followers
You already know this. But you didn’t think of doing this:
Put up a small poster in your restaurant saying “Follow us on Snapchat to get exclusive discounts”. It will work because who doesn’t love getting discounts?
8. Snap Behind-the-scenes
You can do so much on Snapchat if you have a restaurant business. And behind-the-scenes snaps are the best way to create compelling content for Snapchat.
Here’s what you can do.
1. Snap when the restaurant is about to open
Start off your day by sharing it with your Snapchat family. Tell them it’s a big day today and they should come and eat at your restaurant. Show them what happens when the restaurant is not open and what preparations are done.
Being transparent on Snapchat is the key to success.
2. Snap the chef cooking
So what’s on specials tonight? Let your chef show off his cooking skills by snapping him cooking. Include a strong CTA (call-to-action) inviting people to your restaurant.
3. Snap Your Menu
Share your menu to your followers and offer a discount on your specials. Do this on weekends and Fridays to get the maximum crowd.
9. The “Secret Word”
You can do the same to offer a discount to your followers. Give them a secret word and ask them to say this word when they come to eat. Provide a discount in exchange so that people visit your restaurant.
10. Snap Famous People While They Are In Your Restaurant
If you are lucky enough to have celebrities come over and eat at your restaurant, take advantage of that opportunity.
Show your followers who are at your restaurant right now and include an irresistible offer they can’t refuse.
11. Show off your photography skills by snapping the food
Share tantalizing images of your food on Snapchat and ask your followers to come and enjoy. You can also take pictures of your restaurant and show them the place.
Take them to a tour of your restaurant.
12. Include your snapcode in your promotional material
If you do advertising through flyers or newspapers, include your snapcode.
13. A Day Dedicated To Snapchat
This is the best way to use Snapchat for your business. You can do something that I call a “SnapchattersDay” or “SnapchatDay” in your restaurant.
Let’s say you’re doing this on Sunday. So you can call it a “Snap Sunday”.
On this day, use the hashtag #SnapSunday and cross-promote heavily. Sharing pictures and offering exclusive Snapchat discounts on other platforms will get you more exposure.
Ask your followers to celebrate this day using the hashtag #SnapSunday.
Ask everyone in your restaurant to snap their food and share it with their friends and family. This will improve brand exposure tremendously.
Offer huge discounts on this day and make sure many people follow you on Snapchat and visit your restaurant through Snapchat.
Don’t do this too often or people will get bored. Make it rare and make it awesome. Make it memorable for your customers so they wait for the next Snap Sunday.
14. Photo Contest
Ask people in your restaurant to snap you a picture of their food. Also, make them share this picture with their friends.
Tell them that the best picture will receive a 100% discount or whatever feels convenient to you. Tell your customers that they follow you to be part of similar contests.
So what’s the advantage of doing this?
People who have not yet followed you on Snapchat will do because they want to win the contest. And they will regularly view your snaps to check if you’re hosting another contest.
15. Make Them Take Some Action
SmashBurger regularly does these type of contests which involves their followers to do something to win the prize.
They provide discounts to the winner. You can do such contests on Snapchat where you ask your followers to be creative and do something. Here is an example –
Bonus: Hire someone to manage all the Snapchat activities in your restaurant
If your restaurant is busy all the times and you don’t have time to use Snapchat, you can hire someone to do it.
Hiring a young person who is familiar with Snapchat will help you a lot. Look for creative people who can truly create engaging content for your audience.
Food Accounts You Should Follow
There are some food accounts on Snapchat that are totally killing it. You must follow them to get new ideas and inspiration that will help you make your restaurant business successful on Snapchat.
Here are these accounts:
So this is how you can use Snapchat for business. It looks simple but you will have to put in some effort to create content that your audience loves.
There are many ways to create great content. Make sure you follow the best brands on Snapchat and also spy on your competition. Being transparent on Snapchat will help you a lot to grow your brand and build trust among people.
And before signing off, I want you to answer this question in the comments below:
How are you going to use Snapchat for marketing your business?
If you have any questions regarding this guide, feel free to drop comments below.