Snapchat: Not What You Think It Is

November 3, 2014

By Michael Berberich

If you’re older than 30, you could be excused for thinking Snapchat had one scandalous purpose: sending “intimate” pictures that disappeared after 10 seconds, leaving no incriminating evidence. In reality, Snapchat is one of the fastest growing social networks in existence, and a new space for young consumers to connect for a matter of seconds — perfect for today’s attention spans. According to Snapchat in May, 2014, the app’s users were sending 700 million photos and videos per day. Marketers that are willing to enter the space early and “learn the language” of the platform have the opportunity to engage a young audience on their “turf.” 

Audi Takes Snapchat by Storm on Super Bowl Sunday
While every other brand on Earth (it seemed) was trying to be the next “Dunk in the Dark” on Twitter, Audi launched its Super Bowl campaign on Snapchat, sending its followers pictures with humorous captions providing commentary on the game and halftime show. The brand drove consumers to its Snapchat profile via other social channels, and in the two days leading up to the Super Bowl, it had a following of5,000. When users began to share screenshots of the snaps Audi sent on Twitter and Facebook, the number of Audi’s Snapchat followers more than doubled in a matter of hours. By leveraging a new platform and providing contextually relevant content, Audi drove the most online mention of any automaker during the 2014 Super Bowl, a third of which came from the Snapchat campaign.

How do you engage a new generation of conservationists? Meet them on their own terms. The World Wildlife Foundation saw that teenagers and young adults were joining Snapchat in droves, and that “selfies,” or self-portrait snapshots, were the “lingo” of the platform. The #LastSelfie campaign leveraged both of these facts, as the WWF sent “selfies” of endangered animals to its followers, noting that it might be the last photo they ever take and calling the recipients to action, whether it be donation, petition signing, or simply social sharing on platforms like Twitter and Facebook. The campaign was picked up by Fast Company, Adweek, Creativity Online, Reuters, NBC and many others around the world as “one of the most clever uses of Snapchat and the selfie trend”, with headlines in more than six languages. The campaign was retweeted more than 40,000 times, reaching 120 million twitter timelines.

Is your brand ready to enter a new space? Check out the 2014 MMA Smarties Award Winners to see how innovation and creativity can drive business.

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