How Small Businesses Can Connect With Their Customers On Snapchat

A cross between a social media platform and a messaging app, customers in the key 18-34 female demographic are latching on to Snapchat with a passion. The company reports rapid user growth, and also reports that more Snaps are being sent than ever before.

For businesses who are willing to put in the work and understand how to build a successful and engaged Snapchat audience, there is a world of marketing opportunity before them.

These tips will help you connect with your customers on Snapchat.

Behind The Scenes

Everyone loves the moment when they see what’s behind the curtain, and companies are no different. If you’ve got a big event or volunteer day schedule, give your customers a behind the scenes tour to see what’s happening. Take your phone around your office and do 10 second interviews with employees, then post the Snaps to a story. If you let them feel like they’re part of something bigger, and that they’re getting exclusive information that no one else will see, they will reward you for your offering.

Scavenger Hunts

One fun way to use Snapchat is to send customers looking for something. This could be something hidden in your store, or a feature of the nearby area. When they find the item and send a Snap that includes them and the item, you can respond back with a discount code to be used in the store. This is a fun way to give them a discount while also building their engagement on their shopping trip.

Snapchat Custom Filters

One of the big draws of Snapchat is the fun, oddball filters that can be used. From vomiting rainbows to costumes from upcoming movies, Snapchat custom filters can be used by huge media companies and small businesses. Add a filter to your offerings, and reward your customers for sending you Snaps that use the filter. Suggest that they send these Snaps to all their friends, and also send discount codes to those who follow you or Snap you back with the filter.

Coupons and Discounts

In general, Snapchat is a great way to distribute custom discounts and coupons. Customers love the insider feel that Snapchat already gives, so offering a discount that allows them to participate in a flash sale, which is not available to the general public, can feel really great. It’s best to offer discounts as rewards for something. For example, if a customer watches to the end of your Story about a particular event, they’ll see a discount code in the last Snap.

Be Natural

For small businesses Instagram is poised and perfect, Pinterest is information, Facebook is where your mom and grandma hang out, and Twitter is surprisingly wordy for a service limited to 140 characters per Tweet. Snapchat occupies a very different space in terms of what it does and who it’s for.

Snapchat users tend to enjoy the service because it allows them to send group texts that include goofy pictures and funny comments. They know that those pictures will be deleted within 24 hours, and that they can’t be used as blackmail material down the road. So while other platforms push their users to be perfected, Snapchat has a very come-as-you-are vibe. To be successful on the platform, businesses will need to meet customers in this same space. For a company that’s spent years building their brand, this may feel entirely counterintuitive.

Respond to Snaps

This may be one of the most key elements of building a loyal following on Snapchat. Unlike Facebook or Twitter, there’s not an intuitive way for users to follow other users. Twitter and Facebook are both often used to make pronouncements. Followers might then retweet, discuss in replies or comments, or take other action, but the business’s responsibility is, in many ways, done as soon as the company hits post.

Snapchat couldn’t be more different. Since there is such an intimacy to the program, customers are more likely to respond to Snaps than they are posts or tweets. If customers do Snap you back, make sure to respond, even if it’s just with “Awesome shot,” or “This is great, thanks!” They’ll be grateful for the interaction, and be more likely to spread the word about your business.

Businesses are still working on discovering the best ways to use Snapchat to benefit their businesses. So far, Snapchat has not rolled out any big changes designed to help businesses use the platform as a marketing tool, so companies are working on finding out the rules of engagement on their own. These tips will help companies find the right way to use Snapchat for their own markers and audiences.