Small businesses rely on social media marketing to promote their products, services, build and mobilize passionate communities and monitor their business, industry and competitors. But it can be an exhausting challenge to produce and curate relevant content.
Now enter Snapchat, another social channel that has been slowly taking over smartphones across Canada and North America since 2011. If you think this new channel is just a flash in the pan, consider this, Snapchat users view more than 7 billion videos every day. That’s billion, with a “b”.
While younger generations are more familiar with it, like other successful social channels, its popularity is growing across all segments. But it’s a challenge for even the savviest marketers to use this new channel in a way that drives engagement and action. So let’s start at the beginning and look at how small businesses should be using Snapchat now.
If you want to start exploring how you can use Snapchat for your small business, the first thing you need to do is become familiar with it. You and your team need to download the app and start sending Snaps and looking at how brands and events are using their Snapchat accounts.
Have a niece or a son show you how to access stickers and filters. Then, at your weekly status meetings, take time to discuss what you’re each seeing and any ideas for how your small business can use Snapchat in your marketing mix. This self-conducting research is going to help you and team come up with ideas of the type of content you’ll want to start filling your company stories with. Skipping this step will seriously hinder your ability to Snap effectively.
Unlike regular snaps which have a time constraint and disappear after being viewed, Snapchat Stories allow you to string a series of Snaps together to create longer pieces of content that your followers can access as many times as they want over a 24 hour period. Then, like all Snaps, the story is gone.
Knowing this, you can plan a series of Snaps that will create a larger story. A recent Mashable Snapchat Story showed off all the dogs that made it into the office for their “bring your dog to work day”. A TV show may show a series of clips for an upcoming episode. The possibilities are endless and your team should come up with a Snapchat editorial calendar along with your other social media calendars so you’re telling a consistent story at the same time. Some ideas for Snapchat Stories include:
- Promoting your brand
- Preparing for an event, being sure to build anticipation with teasers and behind the scenes
- Getting to know your staff (part of brand promotion but could also help with recruitment)
- Running a contest
The only thing left to do is jump in with both feet. Snapchat is a casual platform with posts that disappear so the risk is lower than other channels. So what are you waiting for?