Boasting an active daily user base that recently surpassed Twitter, Snapchat is far from a fringe social media platform. At last count, there were over 161 million daily users who visit an average of 18 times per day. What's more, Snapchat reaches 41 percent of the coveted 18-34 demographic in the United States every single day.
Many marketers are still struggling with how to use this digital marketing trend to reach this audience, though. Meticulously scheduled and flatteringly filtered social media posts fall in our safe zone, so this instant moment medium seems far more terrifying than its benign ghost logo.
The good news is that since Snapchat was released five years ago, it has added a number of features that make the app more user and marketer friendly, and savvy users have figured out hacks to maximize Snapchat's potential. These six features and hacks give brands more reason than ever to revisit this social media juggernaut.
Launched this July, Snapchat Memories is a real game changer for marketers, and enables users to save snaps for later use. Whereas you were once only able to post photos taken with the Snapchat app within moments of taking them, you can now post photos from your camera roll or Snapchat Memories. If there is a post you just know you'll use again, save it in the Snapchat Memories app under "My Eyes Only" and tag it with keywords so it is easy to find later.
Add Me URL
You'll have a tough time reaching Spachatters without a Snapchat following, so tap your existing social media bases and even your email signature to promote your new account. Use the URL https://www.snapchat.com/add/YOURNAMEHERE to direct mobile users to one-click adding. Unlike other social media channels, there is no need to wait until you build up an arsenal of posts, as every user starts fresh every 24 hours.
Give Yourself More Text
If you've ever wondered how some Snapchatters have more than the allotted two lines of text in their snaps, they are using a very easy hack. Just create a few blank lines of space in a blank email or in iPhone's notes, and copy and paste them into your snaps text field. Just remember--no one wants to read a novel on Snapchat!
On Demand Geofilters
Have an event coming up? Create an on demand geofilter that guests can add to their snaps. This filter must be in PNG form, and can include brand logos, other images, or text--anything other than contact information, hashtags, or URLs. Think of it like a skin for a photobooth...but one that can cover up to five million square feet for $100.
Set it to Music
Add a high quality soundtrack to your snap videos by playing tunes on iTunes or Spotify on your phone while recording. The music, sound effects, or voiceover will appear in the snap in its original quality.
Include a URL
Unlike Instagram, Snapchat doesn't allow links--ecommerce or otherwise--in its posts. PopSugar's Bob Sugar came up with a fix for this in the recently launched http://emoticode.com/Emoticode™. Through Emoticode™, brands can create a "hidden URL" to add to the text of their snap, which consists of a ghost emoji, a rocket emoji, and a three character alphanumeric code. Shoppers then screen grab the snap and open it in the Emoticode™ or ShopStyle app, which directs them to the URL. Yes, we are now doing ecommerce through emojis: what a world.