Snapchat has been offering custom on-demand geofilters for quite some time now, and it still remains woefully underutilized by a lot of businesses. If want to break into the millennial crowd, then conducting your marketing campaign on a youth-oriented social network like Snapchat is very ideal. And using geofilters is something you should capitalize on.
What Are Geofilters?
For those not in the know, geofilters are your usual Snapchat filters or overlays that can only be used in certain locations (hence the "geo" part in the term). They're like overlays or stickers that you can use to prettify your Snaps and make them more interesting and cuter. With Geofilters, you get different kinds of overlays depending on where you are at the moment. For example, the geofilters that are available for use in Paris is very different from those that you can use in New York City.
When the feature was first rolled out, the only available geofilters were created by the Snapchat team themselves. However, community-made geofilters were soon added, as well as custom On-Demand ones that people or businesses can purchase for a time period of either one day or one month.
The marketing potential for these filters was apparent from the get-go. Soon enough, people were using them for baby showers, weddings, birthdays, and other similar occasions; then businesses and organizations joined in on the fun too by using them at conferences and corporate events.
Where to Start?
There are two categories to choose from when it comes to custom On-Demand geofilters: one is available for people and the other one is catered specifically for businesses. The area to be used for the On-Demand geofilters can be from anywhere between 20,000 to 5 million square feet.
On-Demand geofilters for people are strictly for personal events only like birthday parties, bar/bat mitzvahs, graduations, and weddings. As such, the images and visuals that can be used for these should not feature branding of any sort, such as business logos, names, and other promotional content.
On the other hand, On-Demand geofilters for businesses can contain all of the things above. As a matter of fact, it is required for them to include their business name on the geofilter. The only visuals that can't be used are images that are copyrighted by other people and pictures that depict violence and drug-related activities. Communication details like URLs, email addresses, and phone numbers are also not allowed.
As with all forms of user-generated content that are hosted on social networks, the content in the geofilter should abide by Snapchat's own policies, guidelines and conditions.
Setting Up Your Own Custom On-Demand Filter
1) Snapchat has a dedicated On-Demand Geofilters page. (https://www.snapchat.com/on-demand) Go there and click on the Create Now button.
2) You will be prompted to log in to your Snapchat account if you haven't done so already. Once you're logged in, Snapchat will provide you with downloadable templates that you can use for your geofilters.
3) These templates you can use as design guidelines when making your custom on-demand geofilters. You can use them in any image editing or drawing software that reads PSD and AI formats, though of course Adobe Illustrator and Adobe Photoshop are still highly recommended. However, their open source alternatives, GIMP and Inkscape, are great too.
4) Once you're done with your design, upload the file to Snapchat. If all goes well (note: make sure that part of your PNG file is transparent so that you'll be able to see the picture underneath it), Snapchat will give you a preview of what your geofilter would like when tacked on top of a picture.
5) Finalize the look of your geofilter and make tweaks as needed. After you're done with the design, click Next. Snapchat will then ask you what dates you want your geofilter to be active and available for use.
6) Next up is pinpointing the area where you want people to access your geofilter. You will be presented with a map; on this map, you need to draw a perimeter geofence on where exactly you want your geofilter to be accessed. As mentioned above, a minimum of 20,000 square feet is required.
7) Once you're done setting up the date range and location, it's time to get a cost estimate! The pricing is largely dependent on the number of days and the size of the geofilter area. Choose the type of geofilter you're uploading (Business or Personal) and input your payment informatin. Quick note: the pricing for Personal and Business On-Demand seems to be the same.
8) Your geofilter will be sent to the Snapchat team for review. To check on the status of your order, just head on over to the My Orders page. Updates can't be done past this point, however, you can can cancel your order if you want to.
9) Wait for an email from Snapchat telling you that your geofilter has finally been approved.
If approved, your geofilter will now be rolled out and be made available for public use! People can use it by going to the area that you've marked beforehand, and swiping right as you would to access other Snapchat filters like temperature or MPH.
For businesses, Snapchat provides an added bonus of giving you a dashboard where you can keep track of metrics. Data includes the number of people who have viewed and snapped your geofilter.
Extra Ideas For Geofilter Usage
Encouraging employees to post snaps from the office using your business's geofilter is a great way to publicize your brand.
You can cross-promote your Snaps! Download the snaps from entire stories on your account, and share it to your accounts on other social networks. You get wider mileage out of your Snaps this way.
The Snapchat custom on-demand geofilter is a very innovative way of getting people who are already in your area of business to further promote your brand. It's a great way to generate more buzz about your business. It makes people curious and have them itching to learn more about what you're doing. Give it a whirl right now and see how it works out for you.