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Snapchat 2.0 creates new marketing opportunities while requiring extra diligence

Snapchat?s 2.0 update changes things for marketers, as content can now appear without the need to click, opening opportunities to get in front of users while making it more important than ever that brands not post too much. 

Snapchat 2.0 opens the door for marketers to create a very personal connection to consumers as users in the past had to choose to view a brand?s content, something the new autoplay feature update eliminates. Since users now have a streamlined feed of all the stories from others they follow on Snapchat, brands are in danger of coming across as intrusive if they are not meticulous in sharing a smaller amount of content that is more valuable. 

?A big advantage for marketers is 2.0's endless stories,? said Mark Cluett, marketing manager at Polar, Toronto. ?Before, even if a user chose to follow a brand on Snapchat, they still had to manually interact with the brand to see their Snaps and stories, what they shared. 

?Now, going through all your stories is a seamless experience and videos from brands will see more views and engagement as users stumble upon them naturally,? he said. ?Marketers should really refrain from posting too many stories, just because they are certainly getting more views. 

?If a user is inundated with stories from only brands when they are expecting a steady stream of content from a mix of celebs, friends, brands, and news sources they will unfollow very quickly.?

Snapping with success
Users on Snapchat are still getting used to the new experience, and while there is an adjustment period for any big update on social media platforms for consumers, brands need to make sure they adapt quickly. Snapchat?s original story experience required users to tap the individual content they wish to view, but with 2.0, all stories of followed accounts will play automatically in a streamlined feed. 

For brands, the past version meant their content could remain unseen even though a user added the account on Snapchat. The endless story feature puts the content in the eyes of all followers, but users still have the ability to skip and unfollow. 

Marketers sharing an excessive amount of content that is not valuable to the user will see themselves unfollowed by many. Brands that share quality content that users want to interact with and can catch their eye while skipping through feeds have a huge opportunity to further connect to fans. 

The update is also reflective of Snapchat?s growth, which means marketers on the social media application are competing against a much wider range of content, including other brands, advertising and even users? friends. While brands have more opportunities to connect with users on the platform, whether it be Discover channels, ads, filters or organic accounts, this means more dilution for their content. 

It is more important that ever to ensure quality content on the mobile messaging platform. 

?Snapchat?s user-first approach points to increased adoption and overall usage in key demographics,? said Nathan Mosack, director at Resolution Media. ?For marketers, an expanded user base and share of time means more eyes exposed to the entire Snapchat universe: Live Stories, Discover, Lenses, Geo-Filters, etc. 

?Brands have more opportunities than ever on the platform to connect with their audiences,? he said. ?Marketers should take note of some of Snapchat?s privacy policy amendments that enable brands to better leverage Snapchat user data to better personalize content and messages to increase relevance and engagement.?

Branding connections
Brands that do not simply recreate or repurpose material used on other platforms, but truly create an authentic experience with content designed specially with Snapchat in mind can make a special connection. The range of ability on Snapchat is vast in which marketers can create a 360 experience of a brand image, but it must be correctly leveraged. 

The more authentic, creative and organic a brand is on Snapchat, the deeper connection it can form with consumers. 

?Snapchat is injecting the most fundamental characteristics of real-life conversations with its Chat 2.0 product,? said Adam Cohen-Aslatei, senior director of marketing at Jun Group. ?The full combination of live video, text, photos, audio, and creative freedom, gives brands an opportunity to reach and engage their audiences in real time. 

?Many social platforms like Kik have launched similar immersive chat products, however it remains to be seen if users will gravitate to these new features,? he said. ?If Twitter provides the conversation and Instagram provides the visual, Snapchat is aiming to provide a comprehensive 360-degree window into your brand. 

?Snapchat users love authenticity; brands who bring a personal and organic touch will attract the most engaged audiences; users expect a candid, behind-the-scenes look at a brand. Do not just repurpose video content or post static pictures but take advantage of Snapchat?s suite of new features, and provide content that is relevant to the app's audience.?