Column: Use SnapChat to grow your business

By Marc Guberti

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For most of its existence, SnapChat was primarily a social network for millennials. While millennials were getting involved early on, a few businesses also got on the SnapChat wave. When SnapChat turned down Facebook’s answer to it — a clone of SnapChat called Poke — and then rejected Facebook’s $3 billion offer, the growing social network gained the world’s attention.

SnapChat is currently the Pokemon Go of social media. According to eMarketer, 60 percent of all smartphone users use the social media network and are highly engaged. Bloomberg claimed that SnapChat videos generate over 10 billion daily views, which top Facebook’s 8 billion daily video views. No wonder Zuckerberg was willing to put $3 billion on the table.

Since Zuckerberg’s offer, more business owners have been leveraging the platform. Daymond John used SnapChat to make his audience a part of his Power Of Broke book tour. Celebrities like Taylor Swift, athletes including Serena Williams and companies such as ESPN are all using it. If you are not on SnapChat, you are missing out on a big opportunity that many of the top influencers and brands are leveraging for their growth.

Here are some ways you can utilize SnapChat for your business:

BUILD RELATIONSHIPS  WITH INFLUENCERS

Even though SnapChat has over 100 million daily users, it is still a relatively new social network. On a relatively new social network, influencers receive less interaction. On Twitter, I have more than 295,000 followers. I routinely get hundreds of interactions on Twitter on a given day. On SnapChat, I don’t have nearly as many followers, so I don’t get as much interaction. That way, if you wanted to reach out to yours truly, you’d have less competition on SnapChat than you would on Twitter.

While I would respond either way, other influencers may prefer responding on SnapChat since it’s the new cool social network in town. Once you have an influencer’s attention, engage with that user in a meaningful way and then that influencer may decide to help you later on.

DISPLAY YOUR SNAPCHAT QR CODE AS OFTEN AS POSSIBLE

The SnapChat QR code is revolutionary. Each user has a unique QR code, which is the SnapChat logo with a random number of black circles in a random order. Taking a snap of someone’s code will result in you following that person.

I have my QR code in full effect on my blog. To follow me on SnapChat, I don’t even have to give you my username. If you go to my blog, go into the SnapChat app and take a snap of my QR code; you will automatically become my newest follower.

This functionality is such a big deal that some marketers, including me are buying custom-made shirts with their unique SnapChat QR codes. If you meet me in public when I’m wearing this shirt, you can follow me just by taking a picture of my shirt.

PROMOTE YOUR LATEST CONTENT

Each time you write a new blog post, publish a new video or release a podcast episode, you have the ability to promote that content on SnapChat. Similar to the Instagram approach, you can take a picture of your blog post and provide the URL to your blog.

If I write a blog post called “5 Ways To Get More Blog Traffic,” I would take the picture of that blog post and tell my audience that they can find it on MarcGuberti.com. This approach should be used sparingly for your best content.

PROVIDE EDUCATIONAL TIDBITS

SnapChat videos give you a maximum of 10 seconds. Within those 10 seconds, you can offer some quick tips for your followers.

If you feel like a 10-second video isn’t long enough, you can stack several videos together by publishing your videos in a rapid-fire format. You could find yourself talking for a minute or longer about the same topic. You now have a workaround for SnapChat’s 10-second video limit.

When Facebook offered $3 billion to buy the social network, Snapchat’s founders shocked the world by rejecting the offer. Now the social network is on its way to a market valuation of $20 billion.

SnapChat’s sudden rise has resulted in a new form of interaction. This cool social network has plenty of opportunities and the way things are looking, it’s only going to get better.

Marc Guberti is a freshman at Fordham University and a social media and business blogger and author. He’s on Twitter @MarcGuberti and can be reached by phone at 914-722-6005 or email at Marc@MarcGuberti.com.

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