Snapchat, the New Low-Cost Marketing Tool taking the World by Storm

Do you actually even know what it is? Maybe not… Snapchat is a social media platform that allows users to send pictures or videos of up to 10 seconds to their followers. So what’s it got to do with you and your trade business then you ask?

Firstly, Snapchat is increasingly being used by businesses as part of their social media marketing and with over 100 million users, it would be silly to pass up the opportunity- a free one at that!

Secondly, Snapchats core demographic is women aged 16-35. Think receptionists, PA’s, property managers, and busy young mums… all those who would be the ones to book a tradie.

Not every trade business needs to go big on social media, and even fewer on Snapchat. But, if your trade business targets that demographic, or would like to, then this is for you. Here are some strategies to help you utilise this free marketing tool:

 

Go Behind The Scenes
People love a behind the scenes of people and companies they care about. Snapchat offers a much more immersive video experience than the other social media platforms, more powerful than a Tweet or an Instagram photo. Your clients can get a real glimpse into the lifestyle of your company, and they love it.

 

Empower Your Employees
‘Not another platform to use’ we hear you say. Snapchat, like other forms of social media can be time consuming. But there are options: you can delegate your official account to others, a strategy many of the companies who have been early adopters of Snapchat. For example, different employees at different job sites, giving small insights into what is going on. This helps to keep the content fresh and engaging.

You do have to be careful though, there should be some agreements in place in terms of content before passing the account over to your staff. And whilst Snapchat messages disappear, users can still take screenshots so make sure you avoid posting any image that, if taken out of context, could have a negative effect on your business.

 

Be Candid
On Instagram and Facebook, brands often try to project the perfect image or video, taking a lot of time to select a shot and run it through Photoshop or After Effects to perfect the ideal shot. While it’s obviously important to keep up quality, the whole purpose of Snapchat is to be candid. You don’t need to be as obsessive, and it allows you to have much more fun.

 

Keep It Short
Individual videos taken with Snapchat are limited to ten seconds, but over the course of a day you can collect multiple snaps into an overall “story” that viewers can watch all at once. Staying with any one still photo for more than a few seconds in story mode can turn off your audience, and views will fall after that. Keep your still photos to a couple of seconds each, and your whole story compilation to under a minute or two.

 

Adding Followers Is Tough
Snapchat doesn’t make it easy to follow brands—the app doesn’t recommend users to follow or even let you search for people. Users have to know your exact Snapchat name to follow you. The best method for adding followers is to cross promote your account on your other social media platforms and in physical locations, too (perhaps ask customers after every job if they would like to follow the businesses profile). One tool Snapchat does provide is a special QR code. Your customers can take a photo of the QR code with their phones to automatically enroll as followers.

 

Promotions Are Difficult, But Doable
Unlike Facebook, Snapchat doesn’t yet offer opportunities for local or niche advertising. Its current paid advertising options are really only suitable for the big brand, as they reportedly cost up to $750,000 per day. Plus, there’s no targeting of specific demographics or communities, as on Facebook.

Instead, you have to be more creative and appeal directly to the followers you already have. Its do able though… you just have to be creative… for example, you can encourage viewers to take a screenshot of a coupon that appears at the end of a Snapchat ‘story’ or get a codeword from a story etc.

 

So as yet, Snapchat is not the easiest platform for an advertiser, however, that demographic is steering slowly away from the likes of Facebook, and the early adopters of their chosen platforms are appealing to them… definitely worth a look for your trade business… So Tradies, get Snapping.

For more on low-cost marketing tools check out Episode 6 of The Tradie Show – ‘6 Low Cost Marketing Ideas for Trade Businesses’ HERE.