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Snapchat is taking the world by storm. Here’s your guide to using Snapchat for business.

If you haven’t heard of Snapchat by now, you must be living under a rock. A lot of people (including myself) thought that Snapchat was just a fad or that it was for little kids sending risque videos that disappear ‘conveniently.’

But, we were all wrong. This little white ghost with a yellow background has been taking the world by storm, and yes, the businesses are no exception to jumping on the bandwagon.

What is this little ghost?

ShapChat is an application (like Instagram) that only allows you to use it from your phone. It only allows you to post images that are in real time. So, you can’t do a #TBT unless you are in real time doing it.

Using SnapChat for Business

How can you be using Snapchat for business?

Snapchat is being used by SO MANY businesses. After Gary Vaynerchuck invested in the application and blew up as a celebrity, people have been even more exposed to the application. Snapchat is being used to send ‘bite sized’ images and videos to others within the platform.

Companies are showing behind the scenes videos to viewers, restaurants are showing chefs at work and clothing companies are giving viewers first-hand views into what the next season’s styles could be.

How can a small business with a limited budget use Snapchat?

Great question. Using Snapchat for business brings so many opportunities. It can be used by so many businesses for a multitude of different reasons and ways. Here are some for you to ponder:

  • Show customers a behind the scenes view into what your company is doing
  • Show how a product is made
  • Give tips and tricks to your followers
  • Show followers how to do something
  • Give people insight into your thoughts
  • Do a Q&A with a client or follower

Can I have some examples, though?

We thought you’d never ask. Yes. Here at South Street & Co., we enjoy being creative and thinking outside the box. (Doesn’t everyone say that!?) But we really mean it. We recently started a weekly video series for Tuesday- Thursday tips. Here’s how we did it and what they looked like.

Plan

I recently went to a marketing conference in San Diego, CA. It was amazing and called Social Media Marketing World 2016. Social Media Examiner puts it on and they’re one of the leading companies in the social media world right now. Anyway, I learned three things at the conference. Marketing is moving to video, video and video. Ugh. I hate the ideas of doing video, especially LIVE video. Periscope. Nope. Facebook live… I’m getting more used to it…

Here’s the deal though, with these videos you don’t necessarily need to be front and center of them. You can do a video series of a couple different things. And this is what I mean.

Come up with an idea

I have a part timer who works for me Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday. Right now I personally don’t have time to dedicate strictly to videos, so I figured two heads are better than one and she’s in the Snapchat generation

Sidenote: If you feel like a grandma or grandpa, I totally get you. But don’t worry, this guide will help!

Back at it. Okay, so anyway, Kate is the part timer’s name. She’s a senior at UCF and she snaps all the time. So, I gave her the task for coming up with some video ideas for Snapchat. We both came up with three ideas for the three days she works for me.

  1. Marketing Tip Tuesday
  2. Q&A Wednesday
  3. Thursday Thought

Let’s break these down and talk about them individually.

Marketing Tip Tuesday is all about sharing tips and tricks within the marketing world. Last week we spoke about ‘The Secret Sauce to Using Hashtags on Instagram.’ Just as an FYI, these need A LOT of planning. No, it’s not realistic to think that you can plan them out in no time. They need planning, thought and then execution.

Pro Tip: Our first video didn’t turn out well when we downloaded it (not sure why the video didn’t play but all the others we’ve done have worked fine).

Q&A Wednesday is all about answering marketing’s toughest questions. One of the things that I’ve frequently seen on Instagram is flat lays. I did not know what the heck these things were. BUT they’re the amazing photos that look like Disney himself created them. They’re clean, enticing and I want all of them on my IG feed. They look like this:

Since I recently learned (from a client) that flat lays were called flat lays, I decided to post about this on Instagram (this is where my biggest and most active followers are) and then to do a video on Snapchat about this. The end result was a great how-to video that Kate and my other employee, Danielle took charge of and did a great job with. Here’s what it looks like:

The last idea we came up with was a Thursday Thought. This is kind of like the final thought of the week, something simple and to the point. This should be shorter than the previous two and can be watched quickly. The idea that Danielle and Kate came up with was to focus on having a mobile site. A lot of clients don’t realize the importance of having a mobile-friendly website. (If you don’t know how important it is, see this blog article here). Here’s the video.

Pro Tip: One thing I noticed with this one was the timing of the last photo. We learned to schedule the last picture longer than 3 seconds. When we downloaded it, it only flashes for about a second.

Okay, now that your brain is stirring with a lot of thoughts about Snapchat, you’re probably wondering, “Well, why should I do all of this when the videos and photos just go away?” Solid question. Here’s the even better answer. You can add them to your Snapchat story.

What’s a Snapchat story?

Another good question. A Snapchat story is a combination of all of your videos and photos on Snapchat. The program takes time to compile them together.

The kicker?

You can download your stories from Snapchat and then publish to YouTube, Vimeo and all of your other social media channels.

Using SnapChat for Business, the SnapChat Story

Why are they so great?

They’re great because they allow you to share bite-sized content to everyone. Snapchat compiles all of your content into one video file and then allows you to share on the sites you deem fit.

Well, I’m a small business and I don’t know how to come up with content for my business. Don’t worry. We gotchu. Here are some ideas for small businesses looking for Snapchat for business inspiration.

  • AC Company: Show what a great AC v. not great AC looks like, tell people some tips of the day, share what you saw on the job (a funny story or what you found while cleaning pipes)
  • A plumber: This one has so much opportunity with it. Show what you’ve found in pipes, how to unclog a drain safely, tips on what to put in a drain and what not to put in a drain.
  • A soap company: Show how to make soaps, show how to flavor soaps, tell the benefits of using your soap v. others in the stores
  • An acupuncturist: Some companies need to be HIPPA compliant and it’s important not to violate any rules with video. Show how to meditate, show some tips on put ear seeds into your ears, show which points help which parts of your body.

All of these are tips on how to work Snapchat into your business. Don’t worry, you don’t need to be a tween to do it you just need a little creative juice to get you moving forward.

If you do need help or have any questions relating to Snapchat, or marketing in general, you can reach uhere. Let’s get social! Follow us on Facebook, PinterestTwitterGoogle+ and Instagram for more tips and tricks of the marketing trade!

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