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Snapchat is a social media platform that is still very much in its infancy. It may face a lot of headwind with Facebook being so competitive against it, but you can plan on it not going anywhere soon.

In this post, I am going to explain to you how you can master Snapchat and use it to earn money.

A great place to start when thinking about how to make money with Snapchat is with the basics. Let’s take a look at how Snapchat started and what exactly it is.

Snapchat is for storytelling

Snapchat was first released into the App Store in 2011. It was competing against messages apps such as Tango and Whatsapp, to name a few. Many of those apps have since vanished, but, the vanishing photo app Snapchat was able to fight its way and live on.

Snapchat became more popular than these other apps because it allowed you to send photos and videos to a list of friends. While this functionality wasn’t anything special, the app had the unique twist of making messages disappear after the message was viewed. Because of this functionality, Snapchat quickly became known as a “sexting” app. People used the app to send scandalous photos to each other because they knew the image likely wouldn’t live on the Internet permanently somewhere.

Snap’s vanish within 3 to 10 seconds of them being received. This creates a really unique level of content engagement because, if images vanish, it forces you to fully pay attention to what you’re seeing. If you don’t pay attention, you could miss out on what was in that Snap, forever. Fear of missing out is what keeps Snapchat users so engaged day-after-day.

Back in August of 2014, Snap CEO Evan Spiegel stated that 500 million messages were exchanged daily. Now that it’s almost 3 years later, you can only imagine how much bigger this figure has grown by.

In January 2014, Snapchat released a really interesting new feature: Discover. Discover allows large brands to place their own content inside of the content from content creators such as Buzzfeed, CNN, Comedy Central, and others. Other features that have been hugely impactful on growth are Live (which gives you a peek into events around the world) and also Stories (which is a feed of your day that disappears after 24 hours).

If your photo or video makes it onto a Live event, the results can be truly astronomical. Snapchat user Martin Ferris shared that after his Snap was shared via Live, it was viewed over 24 million times.

Oktoberfest Snapchat

If you can get a Snap that contains your product through into a Live story, that can lead to some HUGE brand impressions and engagement for you.

Now that we’ve gone through an overview of Snapchat, let’s look at how to make money with Snapchat…

1. Getting Started: Build an Audience

Building an audience is the first step towards monetizing through Snapchat.

One of the quickest ways to start building your audience is by connecting your address book to your Snapchat account when you register. By doing this, you can quickly see which of your friends are members of Snapchat and you can go down the list and add them all. When you follow them, you’re likely to get followed back by them. Typically, when you add people as friends on Snapchat, you can expect about 75% of people to add you back.

There are no negative implications for adding as many people as possible to Snapchat. Your influencer score and clout won’t take a hit– so it’s recommending that you follow as many people as possible.

Once you have your follower base from adding your contacts as friends in Snapchat, you’re ready to start creating memorable content.

 

2. Make Memorable Content

Creating memorable content is the only way to grow your following. Creating memorable content means:

  1. Being consistent. You need to consistently create content on Snapchat. This means making posts many times per day and not forgetting to make your posts engaging. You need to get your audience wanting to see what you’re up to daily. When you do this, your audience is more likely to start telling other people to follow you.
  2. Define your personality. Defining your personality goes hand-and-hand with being consistent. This is a marketing tactic that allows you to carve out a niche audience who wants to engage with you.
  3. Show what works. As odd as this sounds, showing dogs and attractive women really helps grow your following. Showing one or both of these is a great way to build up your Snapchat audience. If you’re lucky, a site like Buzzfeed will feature your post.

 

3. Start making money with Snapchat!

Once you’ve build up an audience, you can start making money with Snapchat.

  1. Brand coupons. If you’re a brand on Snapchat, offering coupons that expire, exclusively on Snapchat, is a really fun marketing tactic. The idea of scarcity will drive people to use your coupon in store or promo code on your website.
  2. Sell your own Geofilters. If you have design skills, we highly recommend joining the Snapchat Geofilter marketplace on FilterPop. You can make your own Geofilter designs for weddings, birthdays, and more.
  3. Sell your product using Snapcash. You can send people money on Snapchat using Snapcash. If you want to be truly enterprising, you can show goods on your feed and offer them directly for sale in Snapchat. Take a photo or video of a product and tell people that they can send you their address and Snapcash and you’ll mail it out to them.

 

Conclusion

Snapchat is an amazing marketing platform, especially if you’re looking to reach users in the 12 to 24 age demographic. You can captivate your audience, educate them on products, and influence their buying behaviors.