Humanize your brand the Snapchat way

Humanize your brand the Snapchat way | Insurance Business

Humanize your brand the Snapchat way
By Kat Macaulay

It’s a fundamental truth that humans are behind the decisions made in companies, and the adage goes that we do business with people we know, like and trust. One means of humanizing your brand? Snapchat.

Snapchat is the image and multimedia app perhaps best known for its initial branding as a means of privately messaging photos that would self-delete.

Although some businesses scoff that the app is just for sexting and young people, new stats illustrate that the user base is growing – including decision makers. Aside from being dynamic in its acquisitions and having a strong foresight of what its users want and expect, Snapchat offers more mature options, such as the Discover part of the app. Most recently, this election year has seen the partnership between Snapchat and the app TurboVote to enable American would-be electors to register to vote.

The facts on Snapchat are strong: the company is valued at an estimated $20bn and boasts 10 billion video views a day, as well as150 million daily active users. Snapchat has caught the eye of marketers – 5% saying they already use it and 16% planning on increasing their Snapchat activities. Meanwhile, 28% of marketers want to learn more about the social-media platform. Backstopping this interest is the fact that consumer uptake has been strong: 60% of smartphone users aged 13 to 34 utilize the app. With all that to its credit, Snapchat may just be your new best friend.

So who should be using Snapchat as part of their marketing plans? Anyone who wants to be visible, valuable and vertical.

Snapchat is well-suited to the needs of small business, personal brands and entrepreneurs across industries. According to one unofficial Snapchat survey, 95% of users watch Snapchat stories daily and only 5% state that their follows are confined to regular people. The remainder, 95%, follow a mix of regular people and brands.

However, a critical Snapchat insight worth repeating for marketers from the bigger brands: the expectation from Snapchat users is that those brands engage – or go away.

The same survey reports that 95% of users do not think brands should use Snapchat if they don’t engage. Or as Zach Hansen put it on the Snapchatters Podcast: “It’s not good to just shove your stuff down people’s throats – ’cause, honestly, we don’t care.”

Snapchat provides insurers with the opportunity to be nimble and create content and stories that can be repurposed across other social media platforms.

As for the thorny question of return on investment: what is the investment? Resources, time and money. It’s no different from any other piece of marketing – the resources required to create and curate content cost time and money, and companies must ensure the outlay matches the overall goals of their marketing strategies.

Think of small data, rather than big data. In an effort to learn as much as we can by pulling reams of data, sometimes marketers can lose the little things that can make a huge difference. While many companies are obsessed with numbers, such as Google Analytics, this approach can mean missing the wood for the trees. For example, a B2C company asking their followers questions can zero in on critical consumer information from those already engaging with them.

Aside from our American friends Hillary and Donald, politicians are jumping on Snapchat. Despite the potential risks associated with a new platform and no concrete evidence that ROI can be determined, they’ve already decided it’s the best social platform to engage and learn.

Metrics include the amplification rate (the number of views), the conversation rate (number of engagements) and the economic value (the revenue or cost savings).

The most critical metrics to track are the number of unique views and the number of total story completions. The engagement rate – the metric that tracks any sort of engagement relevant to your story – is also crucial.

The most important things to keep in mind to make the most of the app:
• Integrate your Snapchat use with existing programs; align those goals.
• Focus on advocates, not impressions.
• Think about quality, not quantity.
• Both big and small data are useful.
• Try it, test it, track it.
• Be visible, be valuable, be vertical.

Kat Macaulay is a Social Media & Digital Marketing Consultant based in Alberta. Visit for more of her works.