Local Social Media Marketing: Is Snapchat a viable channel?

Jan 06, 2015 Mike Hanna

Marketing Trends

According to Wikipedia, Snapchat is a photo messaging application initially developed by Evan Spiegel, Bobby Murphy, and Reggie Brown, then Stanford University students. Using the application, users can take photos, record videos, add text and drawings, and send them to a controlled list of recipients. If you’re here, you’re probably reading this to learn how SnapChat can be used as part of local social media marketing for franchises. Is it really that useful for marketers?
Consider this, it took just months for Snapchat to go from circulating a pitch deck to media buyers to having some of the world’s largest brands run campaigns on the platform. Amazon, Hollister, Macy’s, Samsung and Universal Pictures all ran Snapchat campaigns last fall. And over this past weekend, Snapchat ran an ad from McDonald’s, arguably its biggest advertising milestone to date.
“The promoted Snapchat posts were part of a broader strategy to introduce our new brand vision,” McDonald’s spokeswoman Terri Hickey said in a statement. “Snapchat is one of the most popular social media sites among millennials, so it’s only fitting that we’re active where our customers are as well.”

Should local social media marketing for franchises follow in the steps of big corporations? Should you add Snapchat to your digital marketing strategy?

Our recommendation? Wait and see. If you already have an integrated digital marketing strategy for franchises that combines online, email, mobile, Facebook and Twitter to deliver a consistent and personalized message, then it COULD be time to branch out to other social channels. If not, let’s get the basics in line first and then later think about expanding to other channels.
Many small business owners make the mistake of rushing in to new opportunities for social media marketing, and then they fail. What’s most important in conducting local social media marketing for franchises is to know your audience. As soon as you have some insights into their wants, needs and habits, choose the most appropriate social media channel to reach them.
Another very important aspect that you need to have in mind is that your social media marketing efforts should portray your company’s personality. As much as new media seems to offer opportunities for “overnight success”, it can easily backfire on you and leave you behind your competition.
So, “conquer” one social media channel at a time. Define each channel’s level of priority depending on your brand personality and your target audience. If you feel that it’s time for Shapchat to be your next challenge, take it! Make sure to get the most out of the limited time you have to engage with your customers. Use your creativity and promote your brand in a fun and appealing way.
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