Snapchat’s meteoric growth, forays into camera technology, and large celebrity influencer presence make it a platform brands cannot afford to ignore. Consumer Electronics brands are just beginning to experiment with Snapchat, with a third of brands active on the app, according to L2’s Digital IQ Index: Consumer Electronics. For brands active on Snapchat, their strategy often consists of short bursts of video followed by periods of inactivity, with most struggling to maintain a consistent, un-editorialized presence.
Most Consumer Electronics brands rely on snaps of new product features, events, or lifestyle content, but some cut through the noise with innovative practices. Snapchat-savvy brands leverage the app’s native functionality and engage users with content that speaks to the casual nature of the platform. For example, HP’s weekly “What the Tech?” series explains concepts such as the “QWERTY” standard layout of English-language keyboards in an entertaining form, and drives commerce by including product page links to the HP Spectre in the midst of the story.
Beats and Amazon leveraged their outsize budgets by merging a celebrity influencer with a sponsored lens. Beats partnered with “King of Snapchat” DJ Khaled, who has 6 million daily followers, to create a custom lens for their new Unity Headphones product line. Amazon hired actor Josh Peck (of Drake and Josh fame) to add some face-changing flair to its Echo product. A Snapchat sponsored lens is the most premium ad buy on the app, and ranges between $100,000 to $750,000 for a 24-hour lens.
While Snapchat handles the creative component of the lenses themselves, brands must think critically about the content and timing of the lenses, and cannot simply repurpose their other online ads in this format. As the platform continues to build out its back-end analytics functionality, brands will gain clarity into the effectiveness of their investments on Snapchat.
Coming of age on Snapchat is testament to digital prowess, and Consumer Electronics brands should be connecting with social-media savvy customers in their natural habitat. Early experimentation on Snapchat allows brands to find a voice that is neither forced nor gimmicky, garners brand loyalty, and can even transform online engagement to offline sales.