The Debate: Snapchat as a Marketing Tool or Just an Extension of Text Messages?
DIY Sprocket Solutions
Technology seems to be a living, breathing entity. As marketers, we are constantly watching as the parameters change, the norms become distant memories, and the things we never thought we'd be marketing with are now front and center. Take Snapchat for instance.
For those who don't know, Snapchat is a mobile application that allows its users to send photo and video messages or "snaps" that automatically delete themselves 1-10 seconds after being viewed. That is the gist of it. The big news is that businesses are beginning to use the app to market their products and companies. This is a whole new spin on social media marketing. Is it even classified as social media marketing? Or is this more like mobile device marketing? Personal app marketing? As these new "social platforms" begin to emerge, it puts pressure on businesses to adapt marketing tactics in order to take advantage of the new opportunities to communicate with their customers in fresh ways.
Because this is so fresh, some people still aren't convinced that Snapchat should be used as a marketing tool. It's definitely a unique tool and not one that is a right fit for every business. People are using Snapchat to release coupons to their customers, feature sneak peaks of new products, release bits of insider information on events, etc.
Meanwhile, Snapchat users aren't exactly feeling warm and fuzzy to the idea that this short-term messaging app is being used to target them for marketing purposes. What's your opinion?
From a customer standpoint, I can see why it might be obnoxious to receive advertisements on a glorified text message app. On the other hand, it's not fun to be advertised to on any platform -but this shouldn't stop marketers from doing their jobs. Companies have to stay relevant with their branding and marketing or they'll be eaten alive.
Think about it. When you hear about a business that doesn't have a Facebook page, what do you think? How is that even possible in 2014? Customers want to be able to easily find, access, and connect with the businesses they're searching for and on the flip side businesses want to be able to find, access, and connect with potential clients and customers.
The whole things seems to be a juggling act. What is stepping over the line? How much is too much? And, how do businesses stay relevant if they can't be on the same platforms that their customers are?
I'd like to know what you all think about using Snapchat for marketing, should it be used as a marketing tool or just an app that works as an extension of text messages?