Boss Lady

The New Rules of Snapchat for Business


Snapchat is quickly emerging as one of the most exciting and useful digital marketing tools for businesses. What makes it so impressive is the ability to spread short, engaging visual content to a highly engaged audience. Unlike other platforms, where users scroll mindlessly, Snapchat users are usually paying attention.

Although the potential is huge, it can be very difficult to figure out how to use a social platform like Snapchat for your business. You may see your kids using it, but not understand how this can translate into a marketing tool.

What is snapchat?

Snapchat is an incredibly popular mobile application, particularly among younger generations. It allows you to send your friends short videos or images, that can only be viewed once and then disappear from your “Story” after twenty four hours. Therefore, the focus for content isn’t necessarily on quality, but on fun.

One of the more popular Snapchat features is the use of filters, which alter your image. Some turn your face into a dog, while others cause rainbows to burst out from your mouth whenever you open it. These are usually animated and much more advanced than many filters seen in previous applications.

Snapchat is an extremely personal social media, typically used to provide quick glimpses into one’s life for friends. A lot of content is humorous and entertaining, rather than serious. This provides both strong opportunities and difficulties for businesses.

Build awareness with SnapAds

SnapAds are a new initiative by Snapchat, which allows you to embed your own ten second, full screen videos in between Stories. Viewers are able to swipe up to see more content, such as a longer video, article or even mobile application. Snapchat advertise that their “swipe up rate” is five times higher than the click through rate on most social media websites.

What’s important is to ensure that your content is interesting and engaging, rather than trying to sell. People will not be interested if you are interruption their Stories with annoying ads.

Drive engagement with geofilters

Geofilters are filters that users can place on their Snaps, which appear when the user is in a certain location. Businesses can use this feature to implement Geofilters in their store or at events. This is a great way to encourage customers to overlay their Snapchats with your branding.

The best way to achieve this is to create a fun and creative geofilter, rather than mere text. This will encourage people to use it and share it with their friends. On Demand Geofilters can be purchased for as cheaply as $5, but Sponsored Geofilters can cost thousands of dollars.

Fuel interactivity with sponsored lenses

Sponsored Lenses are one of the more dynamic ways to engage your customers with Snapchat. Effectively, these are interactive ads that Snapchat users can apply to their Snaps. There is a lot of room for creativity, and your users will hopefully find your Sponsored Lenses a lot of fun.

According to Snapchat, the average user will play with your Sponsored Lenses for at least twenty seconds. This is a big opportunity to engage them and encourage them to share your branding around with their friends.

Of course, creating a Sponsored Lense may require you to work with computer designers to ensure that they work effectively and look good.

Make sure you are telling a story

While all of the aforementioned strategies involve sponsored content, perhaps the most cost-effective way of using Snapchat for your business is to harness a natural audience.

This can only be done if you tell interesting stories that are worth tuning in to. Remember, nobody uses Snapchat to find out what products to buy – so selling directly is not going to work. Most people will be averse to following businesses on Snapchat, so you have to work hard to overcome this barrier.

Build an interesting narrative around your business and encourage people to interact with you. It will take time, but if successful will prove the most profitable Snapchat strategy. If you need to, think strongly about hiring creative people to help you.


Snapchat can be a difficult nut to crack for businesses, but has the potential to be a brilliant marketing tool. Users are highly engaged and interact with good content more than on any other social media website.

Think about using:

  • SnapAds
  • Geofilters
  • Sponsored Lenses

But also remember that building an audience organically is the most effective long-term strategy. This is best achieved through telling interesting stories that truly entertain the audience.

About Stacey Vanoska

Stacey Vanoska is the founder of digital marketing biz, THE SOCIAL CLIQUE, fashion and beauty destination, style etcetera, and teaches PR at The Fashion Institute in Sydney. She has worked across magazine titles ELLE, CLEO, Woman’s Day, Shop Til You Drop, The Collective and Madison, as well as The Sydney Morning Herald, The Sun-Herald and The Canberra Times. With a keen focus on the changing landscape of social media and how to best ultilise content to build your brand, Stacey works closely with business owners to effectively communicate their message – and drinks loads of coffee to keep up with it all.

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