These Snapchat best practices are part of an ongoing series we have called Social Media best practices. Included in this series: Facebook Best Practices, Instagram Best Practices, TikTok Best Practices, and LinkedIn Best Practices.
Snapchat Platform Information
For companies aiming to target younger demographics, Snapchat can be a powerhouse tool when used in combination with other channels. While other platforms may have more users than Snapchat, this photo-sharing app boasts 319 million active daily users.
This becomes even more significant if you’re looking to target people under 35, as 75% of millennials and Gen Z Americans use Snapchat and are highly engaged within the app, a larger percentage than both Twitter and TikTok.
Despite this vast potential, few businesses include Snapchat in their social media marketing strategy. In order to effectively engage with their target audience on this platform, businesses should share real content that is perceived as more authentic than what they may post on Instagram, Facebook, and other channels.
Current audience demographics as of 2021.
- 65% are 18-29
- 24% are 30-49
- 14% are 50+
- 54% female
- 46% male
How to set up
- Download the Snapchat app
- Make a personal account
- Set up a Snapchat Business account
- Cross-promote your Snapchat username or “Snapcode” (QR code) to your other social accounts or at your business location
Snaps: The most basic form of communication on the app, snaps are photos or videos sent between accounts or to a group of users, which disappear after viewing.
Direct messaging: Users can communicate with other users and brands via instant messages. These messages are only visible for a temporary period.
Story: Similar to Instagram Stories, your Snapchat account’s Story allows you to share vertical photos or videos that expire within 24 hours. These can be one-off posts but are more often a series of slides telling a longer narrative.
Live Stories: When users are at the same event or in a specific location, they can choose to share their Stories with the community hub. These are then visible to anyone watching that community story.
AR Filters: Considering more than 800 million users engage with AR filters, creating artificial reality filters that alter a user’s face or surroundings is a great way to engage your audience.
Geofilters: These filters are available to users within a specific area and for a specific amount of time, and serve as a way to get your brand or campaign in front of more people.
Posting and Cadence Times
We find that this is currently the optimal cadence and posting schedule for TikTok.
- 4x/day for growth
- 1x/day minimum
- Any day
- Any time of day (especially 10 pm-1 am)
(Post cadence may change depending on industry and unique audiences)
- Videos: 9:16 aspect ratio
- Video ad length: Snapchat recommends 3-5 seconds to drive action
As an alternative to paid advertising from your brand’s Snapchat account, influencer marketing on this platform allows you to leverage an influencer’s large following to expand your audience and reach new customers. Options for influencer collaboration include paying for 1 story that mentions your company, or negotiating a story takeover when a brand hands over its account to an influencer and gains followers from their content.
Snap Ads: The most common ad on Snapchat, Snap Ads are 10-second, full-screen, vertical videos that include a call to action of visiting a specific link. These should include audio (music or a voiceover) and play automatically with the sound on.
Sponsored Geofilters: Just like the organic geofilters, users can play with these filters in specific locations and share them with friends or post to their story. For specific campaigns or events, geofilters are also a great option.
Sponsored Lens: Snapchat users can take a Snap with your unique lens and share it, getting your brand in front of a larger audience. These tend to be cheaper than the Discover ads, which are primarily used for big brands.
Story Ads (Discover Ads): These high-ticket ads allow advertisers to reach their audiences with a sponsored tile in the Discover feed and start at $50,000 daily.
Collection ads: These ads are formatted like product catalogs and allow you to display products in a virtual storefront. Engagement rates with these ads are 4.1 to 17 times higher engagement rates than standard Snap Ads.
Click here to download a PDF version of our Snapchat Best Practices.