24 Things You Don’t (But Should) Know about Snapchat

Monday, April 14th, 2014

If you’re thinking that Facebook is still the latest and greatest of social media platforms, think again.

The average age of a Facebook user is around 40.

Teenagers aren’t very interested in hanging out with their mom or their grandmother, so they are leaving Facebook in droves.

Where are they going?

Why to Snapchat, of course!

Snapchat

Snapchat

If you’re not familiar with Snapchat, the premise is simple – and obviously designed by someone young enough to understand how important this is.

With Snapchat, you message or send pictures to friends. Then the picture disappears.

That’s it.

The whole concept is disappearing pictures.

Seems silly, right? But it’s catching on like wildfire.

Snapchat’s primary demographic is under 21

While Facebook’s average age is 40, Snapchat’s average age is about 18. That’s a huge difference and shows us very clearly just where the young people are heading. They are snapping.

Snapchat is used most during school hours.

Snapchat School Hours

Snapchat School Hours

In our day, we had paper notes and airplanes. The teacher caught us writing them and read them aloud. Today teens in school can Snapchat each other without getting caught.

Even if they get their phone picked up, there’s nothing there – the message disappeared.

Snapchat doesn’t compile much information.
Unlike Facebook which seems to exist for collecting demographic information, Snapchat doesn’t do much besides take your email address and name. It’s not exactly an advertiser’s dream.

Snapchat isn’t very secure.

Snapchat Isnt very Secure

Snapchat Isnt very Secure

Some helpful hackers broke through the Snapchat servers recently and stole hundreds of phone numbers. They paired them up with names, posted the names online and waited for Snapchat to take action.

It didn’t, so your information is still not especially protected, but that is expected to change.

Your snaps should disappear
The whole idea behind the social media is disappearing images and messages. They are supposed to only stay visible for a few seconds while you hold your finger on the screen. But…

Sometimes your snaps don’t disappear.
The images you send are not only stored briefly on the servers at Snapchat, but they are often stored on your phone’s temporary files. That means someone else can grab your photo even if you thought it was gone forever.

Snapchat may be monitoring messages.

Messages

Messages

There are rules about prohibited images and messages. The only way to check and see if anyone is breaking the rules is to actually check the messages, however. This means someone has to be out there scanning messages and pics at least occasionally.

Snapchat is facing some lawsuits.
It may matter or it may not, but there are a couple of lawsuits pending against Snapchat at the moment. The first is a lawsuit about whose idea the whole thing was in the first place. A former member of the start-up team is suing for 30 percent.

The other lawsuit is more worrisome since the company is being sued about deceptive business practices.

Screenshots just got easier for Snapshot users.
There has always been a risk of someone taking a screen shot of your snap. It used to be that you had a delay when taking a screen shot, making it hard to do in the five seconds the image was visible. Now with iOS7, screenshots can be taken more quickly, making it that much easier to document what’s being sent and received.

Companies will retrieve snaps for you.
If you don’t know how to get to the messages and you regret even the 5 seconds of poor decision making, there are already firms out there who will charge you hundreds of dollars to retrieve and remove snaps and pictures by burrowing down behind the app.

Snapchat will be monetized soon.

Monetized

Monetized

The company is actively seeking ways to make money with the app, but so far hasn’t landed on anything really good. The traditional advertising that is done on web apps doesn’t suit as well since the app doesn’t record much in the way of demographics.

You can play with colors in Snapchat.
Snaps aren’t just images and typed text aka text messages. They are customized images with either typed or written text. And you can change the colors of your text depending on your mood. Most colors are visible on the rainbow bar in the app, but you can also get white or black by dragging from the rainbow bar into the corners of your screen. This is just the sort of customization and “secret information” that young users enjoy.

These aren’t just regular pictures.
Snapchat allows you to take pictures and send them, but it stands to reason that you’d want to send your very best. With features like filters and large text available through the Settings and Additional Features menus, you can customize your picture to make it that much more interesting for your friend who is on the receiving end.

Your “Best Friends” are visible to everyone
If anyone wants to find out who you are Snapchatting with the most, all they have to do is click on your name in their contact list. The three people you chat with the most will pop up under your name. While it may see harmless, there are plenty of relationship risks here for the taking.

Companies are using Snapchat.

Taco Bell Snapchat

Taco Bell Snapchat

If it seems like all of this is just appropriate for teens who want to send notes to each other during math class, you’re not realizing the full potential of snapping.

Taco Bell is the largest company to date to realize just how much Snapchat can do for reaching out to customers. By embracing Snapchat, Taco Bell sends out pictures and messages about new menu items. Other companies are using Snapchat for similar things including coupons.

Coupons may be the future of Snapchat.
Some businesses are starting to wonder if coupons and promotional offers are the way of the future for Snapchat. The concept is simple – ask customers to “friend” you on Snapchat and send a picture of something, perhaps your frozen yogurt or celebrity shot. Then, the company responds with a coupon.

Naturally the customers must work fast to use the coupon since it will disappear quickly, but clever companies are clever consumers are finding lots of ways to make this work.

Companies are making announcements using Snapchat.
If you’re not ready to send out coupons just yet, you can make plenty of waves using the social media platform as a way to make announcements or hype fans up for what’s next.

When Taco Bell revealed its secret announcement would be by Snapchat, the populace was stoked – it was big, it was urgent and you had to pay attention or you’d miss it. Sounds like ideal marketing if you can make it work.

Snapchat now allows videos.
Acura used the Snapchat video to boost the enthusiasm for car lovers. The first one hundred people to “friend” the company received a short video of the latest car model by Acura – one that was highly anticipated by sports car enthusiasts, mind you.

Companies can befriend customers using snaps.

Befriend Customers

Befriend Customers

Snapchatting is very intimate and that doesn’t just mean a place for dirty pictures. The idea of being close enough to send and receive urgent messages makes you close to the person you’re communicating with.

This is a great place for companies to be – buddies with their customers. Millennials embrace companies who seek relationships with them, so it’s no surprise that Snapchatting works very well in this way.

You have to open snaps to see them.
You may be wondering how companies can make coupons and announcements very effective if they disappear in 5 to 10 seconds. The fact is, in order to see a snap you have to open it and keep your finger on the screen for the full time it is visible.

This means that coupons send to you would stay put at least for a few minutes and then you can open them at the register to put them to use.

Companies need to be creative to make commercial Snapchatting work.

Creative Commercial Snapchatting

Creative Commercial Snapchatting

If you want to really impress young people with your snaps, you need to get creative. The time limit is the fun of the app, so it makes sense that you’d use it the same way your young customers do.

Send something racy, something funny, something outlandish and leave your customers wanting more. When does successfully, the popularity of your snaps will spread and you’ll wind up with increasing numbers of friends and followers.

Snapchat makes great “leaks”.
If you have a loyal fan base through Snapchat, you can stir up some excitement by “leaking” something new that will make your followers thrilled. The idea here is twofold – one, your “trusting” a select group of people and two, you’re using the app as it was intended, a way of quick, sneaky communication.

Use interactive snaps
If you’re going to try using Snapchat for business, don’t stop with the idea of sending customers something. Ask them to send you something in return. Snap a picture of your food, your car, your idol and send it to the company. In return you get something fun just for you.

Try using the Stories feature.
Snapchat’s latest feature, “Stories”, collects snaps from a certain period of time to show the progression over that period. This is a perfect way to show behind the scenes develop, the growth of a product or idea or just the fun that you’ve had with your favorite sports team or celebrity friends for your followers.

Snapchat isn’t for everyone, and the very intense nature of the rapid-fire messages and pictures makes it intimidating for those who are still having a hard time getting used to any social media messages at all.

But if you’re looking to reach the 13 to 25 year olds, this is the place to be. They are leaving Facebook and coming here – where information whips by just as quickly as their attention span.

And it’s up to you to put the new technology to work.

Hey, am - the CEO and Founder of the Guest Crew Influencer Marketing Community and a full time Blogger. Follow me on Twitter, Linkedin and Facebook.


49 responses to “24 Things You Don’t (But Should) Know about Snapchat”

  1. Great 🙂 It’s amazing to secretes about Snapchat 🙂 Now I understand yes everyone must know these thing about Snapchat.

  2. Hi Uttoran,

    Thank you for discussing about Snapchat.
    Well, this is the first time I heard about Snapchat. I think, this is interesting, moreover, most users are teenagers. It looks like it is popular with teenagers, right?
    Then, I keep wondering, if I don’t know this yet, does that mean I am including an old people, I guess. LOL :))

    Btw, thanks for sharing this, Uttoran.
    It’s informative article, indeed!

    Nanda

    • Uttoran Sen says:

      Hey Nanda,
      welcome to Guest Crew and thanks for your comments,

      Snapchat is surely for teenagers as it targets school children. However, I would not consider you as someone old just because you don’t use snapchat. There are plenty of social sites available – it is almost impossible to be active on all of them.

      Glad you found the article informative,
      thanks,
      Uttoran Sen,

  3. Amiti says:

    I think Snapchat is a fad and that it will not still be with us in a year or two. Thanks for sharing, as although I don’t use it, you gave some nice interesting insights on it.

    • Uttoran Sen says:

      Hey Amiti,
      welcome to Guest Crew and thanks for your comments,

      Thanks for sharing your opinion about Snapchat with us. It is hard to predict what will and what won’t work on the social media. Snapchat is gaining steady popularity at this moment, hope it grows even bigger in time,

      thanks,
      Uttoran Sen,

    • Lalaland says:

      Its been over a year and snap chat is still here

    • T says:

      WRONG! 3 years later and it’s only getting bigger.

  4. Tuhin says:

    Nice post!
    Learned a lot about Snap chat. Gonna try it soon!

    • Uttoran Sen says:

      Hey Tuhin,
      welcome to Guest Crew and thanks for your comments,

      Glad to know that you found the article informative,
      Do let us know your Snapchat experience,

      thanks,
      Uttoran Sen,

  5. Samir says:

    Hello,

    Well the first thing I really don’t know about Snapchat as it’s totally new to me. I’d try it out soon.

    Thanks

  6. Babanature says:

    Hello Uttoran,
    This is my first time of hearing the word snapchat. You have done a nice review that made things a little more clear… I will surely look into this little gem and see how it goes.
    Thanks for drawing our attention to this… and do have a lovely weekend

    • Uttoran Sen says:

      Hey Babanature,
      welcome to Guest Crew and thanks for your comments,

      Snapchat is gaining steady popularity, am sure with time more people will know about it,

      thanks,
      Uttoran Sen,

  7. Hi,

    Thanks for sharing about snapchat. It’s new for me to know about the snapchat. Here i clearly understood about this product. I will surely try this and let this know to others like me.

  8. Snapchat ? I dont’ hear about Snapchat in fact. This is first time to hear about Snapchat. I just visit on Google Play & find Snapchat. I recently install it in my cell phone & try to using this app but I must need to know these 24 About Snapchat !

    • Uttoran Sen says:

      Hey Maneesha,
      thanks for your comments,

      Snapchat is popular now, good to know that you are giving it a try,
      keep us updated with your feedback about snapchat,

      thanks,
      Uttoran Sen,

  9. anand says:

    Good information you have showcased here.

  10. Charmie says:

    I used snapchat while I used to have boring lectures on Netwrok Analysis in my engineering 4th sem. 😀
    Thanks for this.

  11. Qasim says:

    Hi,

    Well I haven’t read about this social website before, thanks for sharing these information and facts about snapchat, I will check it out.

  12. Mark says:

    Great one, will check this features of snapchat for sure.

    Thanks

  13. Rohan says:

    I learnt so much today about Snapchat. Though there are some loopholes now, but it will soon be resolved.

    I liked it from the advertisers perspective, immediate CTA via snaps of coupons or discounts.

    As of now, since there seems security issues too, I will pass on Snapchat but once it is stable, I will stumble upon it.

  14. sandra says:

    If i were to take a pic and then click on the “X” button would my snapchat remain saved even though not sent and deleted?

    • June says:

      If you take a pic, and do not send it, it is deleted. You can save your own pics by taking a screenshot, clicking the arrow at the bottom to save the pic to your phone or device or post the pic to your story, and then take a screen shot of it within 24 hours. But just taking a picture then deleting it by clicking x means you threw it away. It is not saved, nor is it sent to anyone, nor is it posted to your story

  15. merrr says:

    does anyone know if there is a way to sign into another account without logging the account out elsewhere?

    • June says:

      I am guessing you would have to sign out, then sign in with whatever username/password. You can only be signed in with one account on a device at a time.

  16. June says:

    I love snapchat. Me and my fiance use snap all the time. We are defiantly not part of the teenage age group. LOL we are 35-40! We use it everyday. We snap each other, use video, send funny pics, snap with our children. I love the app, and can only imagine it will grow in popularity!

  17. Victoria says:

    Hey if I add someone on snapchat… how will I know if they added me BACK?

  18. Kiara says:

    Hello
    I have a question I send snapchats to my friends n it says deliver but then when they open it it does t open all the snaps. When u check it’s says they only open one of the 3 I send .. This happen to me several time why is this possible ??
    Also I seen other ppl writing more in the little bar and mines don’t so I was wondering is there an app for that

  19. Eva says:

    I use snapchat a lot it is very good if you want to know what’s going on all around the world ! You must have put this up a few years ago because there has been a lot of updates to it since videoing but I never knew about the different colours when dragged to the corner . Thanks for the tips !

  20. ariel says:

    Is there any way I can make a Snapchating story for an event so that everyone with a Snapchating is able to see it?

  21. ariel says:

    Is there any way I can make a public story so that everyone who has a snapchat is able to see it?

  22. lauren says:

    Great!
    I want to join snapchat but i am not sure whether it is safe I am going to start using it could you help me by making a fact thing about the privacy on snapchat

  23. Sasha says:

    HEY! Thanks for the information! I recently downloaded Snapchat and I can definitely see why its so popular 🙂

  24. sarah says:

    hi, how do I find out if a public user on snap chat unfriended me? I can watch their story, but the user don’t open mine recently.

  25. Maia says:

    Hello!
    I have been having problems with my snapchat for a bit now and it’s got me frustrated. I’ve done the delete/redownload method and the restarting device one too. Nothing’s changed except the fact that when I send a snap; it said it was delivered but then it disappears from my feed. Also sometimes I would send a snap and come back to it later in the day and it shows that it’s been open but the date/time or the snap shows as the date/time of the last snap I sent to the person. It only lets me chat on snapchat, but it does let me send snaps it’s just that the person never gets it because after an amount of time it disappears from my feed

  26. Cruz says:

    Hi
    How will i know if someone i added on snapchat first added me back. Like i added a celebrity first… and i dont know if he/she added me back. How will i know?? Help! TY

  27. Rebecca says:

    I’m not in that over 40 age group, but I don’t to hang out with teenagers or deal with their social media drama. I just installed this to see how it works and if it’s worth it, but it will probably be replaced by the newest fad app within a year.

  28. sara says:

    i use snapchat and i didnt know that i am going to be using instagram more because its more safe

    thx for the infomation

    sara

  29. I am just trying to figure out SnapChat so thank you for this. I don’t fully understand it yet but this helps me get a feel.
    Renee Groskreutz recently posted…How To Do A Quick And Easy Blog Check UpMy Profile

  30. Ane says:

    I accidentally sent snaps to team snapchat only and I can’t view it. I really want to see those snaps

  31. Kristen Sanchez says:

    Since you mentioned companies sharing snaps on their stories from their customers, I was wondering if you knew the trick to that?

  32. Ashly says:

    Admiring the time and effoort you put into your blog and in depth information you present.
    It’s awesome to come across a blog every oncee in a while that isn’t the same old
    rehaswhed information. Fantasric read! I’ve bookmarked your site and I’m
    adding your RSS feeds to my Google account.
    Ashly recently posted…AshlyMy Profile

  33. BETH CASTO
    Twitter:
    says:

    Snapchat has only gained popularity because people are using it to cheat..its not for teenagers anymore. DUMP ANYONE WHO USES THIS APP. texting is enough for honest people!

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