Snapchat Usage and Advertising: A Marketer’s Guide to Maximizing Returns from Snapchat


Ever since Snap went public in March 2017, the company’s stock prices had been witnessing a steady decline. Throughout this phase, there was a clear sense of lack of growth for Snapchat. The numbers did not really have marketers drooling. Emarketer’s Snapchat Usage report for 2017 captures most of these numbers perfectly.

Do Snapchat Marketers Have Anything To Worry Over?

No one can hearsay the impact that Snapchat has had on social media. Most social media platforms have adopted the most loved features of this platform, whether it’s the ‘story’ format, ephemeral content, or filters. Even otherwise, there’s a lot happening at Snapchat.

For starters, the market sentiment is positive, particularly since Snap released its 2017 Q4 earnings report (which also caused a 20% stock price rise). Snap added 8.9 million daily active users to the platform in the Oct-Dec, 2017 period. This is faster than Facebook’s activity in North America. Let’s keep in mind that Snapchat is only half the age of Facebook! Also, marketers have clear reasons to focus on Snapchat because the platform increased its spending on revenue sharing advertisement deals from $10 million in 2015 and $58 million in 2016 to more than $100 million in 2017.

How Can Marketers Make 2018 Memorable By Smart Snapchat Marketing And Ad Campaigns?

Know Your Audience

Contrary to popular beliefs, Snapchat is not merely the hunting ground for the young. The audience base has grown tremendously in 2017, both in number and variety. James Borow, Snapchat’s director of revenue programs, commented that 50% of the social media platform’s daily new users were over the age of 25. This is a major information bite for marketers who are generally convinced that their Snapchat content should be teen-worthy.

Here’s a chart to help you understand the composition of Snapchat’s user base, as per age groups (figures in millions).


This is a call out to marketers and content creators to widen their spectrum in terms of content themes they explore for their Snapchat marketing.

It is important to track brand mentions using a social media monitoring tool like Sentione. This will help you to understand the impact of your brand among your audiences.


Know Your Platform

The general opinion about Snapchat is that marketers have tremendous room to be adventurous with their content, because of the self destructing nature of Snapchat content. This becomes a reason for brands to quickly jump into Snapchat marketing, without planning out the content. That’s a mistake.

Some key points to note:

  • Your Snapchat content will remain in the user’s inbox until it’s opened.
  • Because it’s going to disappear after they access your content, users will assess it with a lot of focus.
  • This is unlike most other platforms, where your content is quickly archived into the ‘history’, or relegated to lower levels in the user’s ‘timeline’.

Here are some time tested and proven effective Snapchat content ideas that will help you crush the competition:

  • Create valuable tutorials for the community
  • Conduct a Q&A session with an expert
  • Play around with your snaps to make the content more fun-filled and engaging
  • Add in exciting coupons (snap a ‘call to action’, snap your promo offer, and send it to a Snapchat story)
  • Start a Snapchat contest
  • Conduct an interview

For a platform like SnapChat, metrics like Total Story Completions and Completion Rate are important for judging brand engagement.

Here are some key highlights from a Snapchat content analysis report published by Snaplytics, after a survey of 500 brands using the platform for social media marketing.

  • 61% of Snapchat content posted by these brands is video.
  • Consistency in posting Snapchat content is the key to success.
  • Number of snaps per story averages at around 11 per update.
  • Completion rates are 88%!

Influencer Marketing On Snapchat

L ‘Oreal’s Olay Clay Mask Snapchat marketing case study has become a bit of a legend already. The brand’s official statement suggests that its Snapchat campaign, which was a part of a multi-platform influencer campaign, drove the sales for the product up by 51%. Before the campaign, L ‘Oreal had been enjoying decent success on Snapchat via its Sponsored Lenses and vertical video ads.

The brand eventually worked with 2,000 Snapchat influencers, all women who posted their photos, video, and product reviews across Snapchat and several other platforms. The campaign reached out to 740,000 consumers, across 6 channels.

There’s general opinion that Snapchat doesn’t promote its platform for use by influencers (which is true to an extent). However, the focus on authentic and one-to-one conversations is exactly what makes micro influencers a force on Snapchat. Moreover, for influencers who’re already successful on other platforms, it’s natural that teens, young adults, and adults will look for them on Snapchat and follow them.

Another influencer-based method is to let them take over your channel! Marriott did an influencer campaign on Snapchat where each influencer took over the hotel industry giant’s Snapchat account once a month. This method is great, because the content is exposed to the influencers’ as well as your followers.

Note: Since Feb 2018, Snapchat has started offering analytics insights to creators with sizeable audiences, much like other platforms that promote influencer campaigns.

Get Creative, Get Real: Some Tips And Tricks

Apart from all the tactics discussed, there are other nifty tricks you can use to keep your Snapchat advertising in tune with the usage preferences of users. Here are some of them:

  • Use a Snapchat Story to conduct a quick and fun-filled walkthrough of your business operations
  • Post some behind the scenes content from your workplaces
  • Answer every message
  • Use Snap Ads to leverage audio visual content for marketing your brand.
  • Sponsor a lens; identify how a user would engage with your product, and apply the insights to a lens (for instance, a lens that lets users ‘drink’ your energy drink)
  • Copy McDonalds; whenever users turn location settings on in McDonald store, they can use themed geofilters. Create something similar.


Concluding Remarks

Snapchat is well and truly on track to being the lively, aggressive, and engaging platform that it initially was. Growth might have flatlined for most of 2017, but there are clear indications, both from a platform features and activity, and a financial performance perspective, that Snapchat will be a major component of the marketing and advertising strategies of brands throughout 2018 and beyond.

About the Author: Joydeep Bhattacharya

Joydeep Bhattacharya is the author of Seo Sandwitch Blog where he shares latest stuff and articles related to SEO, SEM, PPC and Social Media. He has a real passion for SEO and he loves to be associated with the ever changing field of internet marketing.

Seo Sandwitch

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