This is part 2 of 2 of a quick look at Snapchat. In Part 1, we looked at how popular the app has become.
Once upon a time, a long time ago, I too was a Snapchat denier. “It’s useless,” I would say. “I don’t get the point at all. I’ll never use it.”
Fast forward a few years later, and Snapchat is probably one of my top two most-used apps. I came around, and now I love it. It’s an easy, fun way to stay in touch with my friends from all over the world (rabid rabbit filters for everyone!). I also think it can be a brilliant tool for celebrities and brands to take advantage of. Why? Well for one thing, the experiences brands create on Snapchat are far more intimate than any social channel. I can’t believe I’m about to say this, but it’s like they become your friend. You get to see the faces that make everything work; you get to see behind-the-scenes of your favorite fashion house or fast food chain. (I’m obviously talking about Taco Bell here.)
Another positive for brands on Snapchat is that it’s less intrusive than other social channels. Users choose to view what Snaps they want to. Does that mean you better be pretty entertaining? Sure. But you can guarantee that everyone watching your snap is doing so because they choose to. Not because it was pushed in their feed.
But as marketers, our first instinct is to ask, “Wait – how can we measure it?” It’s true. Snapchat doesn’t really have great analytics at this point. As part of a profession that has become driven by data, a platform that doesn’t offer us a lot leaves us turning our backs on a tool that has some pretty great potential. Though I’m a big proponent of data and measurement (I mean, duh, my job depends on it!), I do see a lot of value in pursuing a channel or strategy if it creates an unmatched experience for customers. I feel a stronger connection with brands on Snapchat – which makes me more likely to stay loyal and use a certain product or buy a certain food.
If you share similar feelings and are ready to get your Snap game going, there are a few quick ways you can measure engagement on Snapchat. Let’s break ‘em down:
- Views. For every Snapchat Story you post, you’ll receive a view count. This is very baseline stuff, of course. But you can at least get a sense of how many people are checking out your posts.
- Screenshots. You know it’s real when someone screenshots your Snap. By real, I mean someone either wants to love you, make fun of you or expose you – but either way, they have officially saved your photo. Though you may not know why someone took a screenshot, it is another method of measurement. In fact, you could even encourage people to screenshot as a way to measure. There have been brands or individuals who post three different options or products and encourage users to screenshot their favorite. It’s a unique way to gather some data from the platform.
- Utilize unique codes. As more and more celebrities join Snapchat, they have also begun to use the platform as a way to endorse products. For example, I’ve seen some post unique codes for eyelashes or teeth whiteners. By creating codes specifically for Snapchat, you’ll be able to see how many people purchased something as a result of viewing your post. (Yep – use this as a reminder to consider the power of influencer marketing on Snapchat as well – but that’s a post for another day.)
Over time, I expect Snapchat to expand their analytics offerings. They’re no longer a new, shiny toy but rather something that’s become a mainstay among social media users. They will evolve just as other networks have in the past.
In the meantime, how else do you measure engagement on Snapchat?