If you’re trying to figure out how to reach a younger audience for your business or product, meet Snapchat. This social media platform is highly interactive and used by 50% of consumers between the ages of 15 and 35.

Users are 75% likely to “swipe up” to make a purchase – that’s HUGE! And it’s why you shouldn’t underestimate the power of Snapchat. Of course, to convert, you must have users. We’re going to show you how to get them.

What is Snapchat?

Before we go into how to build your Snapchat audience, let’s get to know the application a little better. Snapchat was created to let individuals communicate with one another by sending temporary messages. Once a message is opened, it disappears. Originally intended for pictures, it’s since grown to include text, doodles, and marketing.

The largest group of users are under the age of 24 so it’s a great platform to target the younger demographic. And considering it has over 200 million daily users, your potential reach is massive. This makes it a great marketing tool in which to invest. Now, let’s get rolling…

Create Your Profile

First things first: download the app and create a profile. If marketing is your goal, set up a business profile so you can pay to launch ads. Otherwise, there’s no real difference between a personal and business profile.

The first thing to decide is your username. It should be unique so you may have to add numbers or underscores to get what you want. Once it’s set, it can’t be changed, so put thought into it. Once that’s set up, you’ll link your account to an email so it can be verified. Finally, add a few photos (maybe your logo?) and you’re off to the races!

Add Facebook Friends and Phone Contacts

If your goal on Snapchat is to market your business, you need a decent amount of followers. One of the easiest ways to start is to invite your current social media fans from other channels and your existing contacts. When setting up your profile, you have a few options for inviting current contacts to follow you on Snapchat. Here are 3 ways:

1. Create QR Codes to Share

A Snapcode is basically a QR code unique to Snapchat and it’s one of the quickest ways to add users to the app. You can create your Snapcode under the settings of your profile and then have friends scan it on their phones to easily find and add you. There’s also a feature allowing you to link your business website to the Snapcode. This is a great way to promote your company while adding friends.

2. Email your Contact List

Once you’ve created your Snapcode, consider blasting a quick message to your email list letting them know you’re now on Snapchat. Tell them this is a new way of keeping up with your company and to be the first to know of new products or specials. Customers love feeling like they’re getting exclusive previews!

3. Insert in your Signature and Social Media Profiles

Finally, plug your Snapcode into your email signature and social media profiles. This is a passive way of adding followers continuously. Just set it and forget it.

Do a Giveaway or Contest

Outside of your current friends and followers, you also want to find new contacts. One of the best ways to do this is through a giveaway or contest. Online users get excited about the possibility of winning something (really doesn’t matter what it is!) and will participate in your contest eagerly.

Announce a giveaway with the entry rules to include sharing or liking your profile and post. This engagement will promote your profile and bring you new followers who will then share to win and so on, and so on. You can do these as often as you feel like giving something away and gaining new followers.

For example, say we want to promote a practice test app for teenagers in Texas. We may make a post with a teenager dangling their car keys and text on the screen saying, “Download our new Texas DPS test app and share this post for a chance to win FREE GAS for a year!” People would share it like crazy and your app will soar in popularity.

Be Engaging and On-Trend

Now that you have some followers, find ways to keep them engaged. Post regularly and try to change up the content you put out. Things that are always intriguing to followers include:

  • Sneak Peaks and Behind the Scenes
  • Employee Takeovers
  • How-To Videos
  • Interviews

Post Often and Strategically

As mentioned before, it’s important to post often. This ensures that your followers will see your content on their feed. You should also play around with the time of day you post. See when you get the most engagement. Most marketers like to post in the mornings and at lunch, but see what works best for you!

Analyze and Adjust

After you’ve been on Snapchat for a while, look at your results and see if you need to make any adjustments. Unfortunately, Snapchat doesn’t have analytics like some of the other social media platforms so it’s not as easy to dig into your data. You can, however, see the number of views that your posts get and how many times someone takes a screenshot of your post. If this isn’t a high number, you may need to change up what you’re posting to increase engagement.

SnapChat: An Overlooked Marketing Goldmine

While Snapchat may not be the first social media app that comes to mind in terms of marketing your business, it’s not something to ignore considering the massive amount of active users they have. Take some time to build your followers and keep posting content that engages them while simultaneously promoting your company. It doesn’t take a large investment and you may find it’s more than worth the effort.

Author Bio: Tim Waldenback is the co-founder of Zutobi Drivers Ed, a gamified e-learning platform focused on online driver education to help teens get their licenses. Tim founded Zutobi to make world-class driver’s education fun, affordable, and easily accessible for all.