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Snapchat - Starting a New Chapter in Marketing

Snapchat is one of the most popular social media platforms among young people aged between 13 and 25. Although it seems Snapchat is not as a good marketing platform as other social networking sites like Facebook and Instagram, the feature of focusing on using photos or videos with short captions starts a new chapter in marketing.

To begin with, let's have a basic understanding of the general way of doing marketing on Snapchat. Similar to Facebook, Snapchat has an Ads Dashboard. Brands are required to enter some essential ad information and target audience, as well as uploading the ad photos or videos for preview and release. Brands are able to create their own photo filters and make the filters available in certain areas to let Snapchat users take photos with those creative filters which promote the brands in an indirect way. After publishing the ads, Snapchat will provide a report on the campaign, which brands can better know the impressions, swipes, reach and the like.

The following automobile companies grabbed the features of Snapchat and created interesting marketing ads and campaigns.


Super Bowl USA is an annual grand event attracting many audiences. Since the number of audience increases during the Super Bowl, TV advertising time is much expensive than the normal. In 2014, Audi chose not to advertise on TV, instead, Audi started a campaign on Snapchat, sending some funny photos to their followers during the match, and this drew over 100,000 people’s attention, the total impressions of this campaign was about 37 million times. Some photos may seem irrelevant to the match, but it actually grasped many Snapchat users’ attention and started following Audi’s official Snapchat account.


BMW introduced BMW X2 in 2017, it was also the first automobile brand introducing a 3D photo filter as a marketing campaign on Snapchat. By clicking the logo of BMW on the Snap Camera, users would see a BMW X2 projected by Augmented Reality (AR) on their screens. Users could zoom in and appreciate the details of BMW X2, take a photo with the car and could have a taste of being the owner of BMW X2.


Lollapalooza is an annual music festival. Toyota cooperated with Lollapalooza Music Festival and held a campaign on Snapchat by using a photo filter. Users only needed to take a photo with the particular filter that was available in areas near the festival venue, they would get a chance to get a golden ticket to the Lollapalooza Music Festival. Toyota would drive the winners home after the music festival to ensure the winners’ safety, thus Toyota could build a positive image through this campaign.

Despite the fact that Snapchat focuses on using photos or videos with short captions of Snapchat may be a limitation, it can also be a selling point of Snapchat. Rather than boosting the sales, Snapchat is more suitable for raising brand awareness, let youth to notice the brand and impress them in an appealing way.


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