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Engaging Students with 'Snappy Hour'

Posted by Kate Seat on 1/1/16 4:22 PM
Topics: social media, snapchat, MBS Monthly Marketing Plans

With 100 million daily users, Snapchat is an app that’s already found a devoted audience among millennials. What’s the appeal?

  1. Snaps only last for 10 seconds
  2. Snaps are all about the visual
  3. Snaps can only be seen by your followers

Though these only scratch the surface of what makes the app so popular, they’re a great place to start to explain how Snapchat can be an invaluable tool to increase engagement from your customers, move some merchandise and put a fresh spin on the old flash sale.

Snappy Hour

Let’s get snapping

First things first: If you’re brand new to Snapchat and need some help getting started, you may want to check out either this tutorial or this one.

Putting Snapchat to work for your store

Download: all materials in Snappy Hour marketing kit
Download: all materials in Snappy Hour marketing kit
Download All Materials

It may seem a little counterintuitive that a medium that’s designed to self-destruct quickly and be viewed only once would make a good marketing tool, but those traits are exactly what makes sending promotional Snaps so effective. In fact, Snapchat is all about being in the moment.

Here’s why:

1. Snaps only last for 10 seconds

While your recipients can take a screenshot of a Snap (and you’ll know if they do), the whole point is that they have a limited amount of time to view what you’ve sent. This lends a sense of urgency that a Facebook post can’t compete with.

2. Snaps are all about the visual

What better way to sell a hot new product then by sharing a picture of it? Not only will this showcase the sale item, it also makes it easier on you — all you have to do is take a quick picture, scribble a few details, send it and you’re done!

3. Snaps can only be seen by your followers

Adding to the feeling of exclusivity, these flash sales are strictly VIP only! In order to find out about the special deals you’re offering, your customers will need to become followers.

Creating your very own Snappy Hour Sale

Step one: Pick a time

By this point, you should be signed up and familiar with the basics. If not, now’s a great time to get set up.

Once you’re ready to go, decide when your sale will be and when you’ll announce it, i.e., send your Snap. It’s important to be consistent with your designated Snappy Hour — otherwise, your customers won’t know when to check for them.

Step two: Designate sale items

Since it’s so easy to announce each sale, you could decide what you’ll offer on the fly. On the other hand, it may be easier to keep your staff on the same page if you at least outline a basic plan for a certain amount of time. For example, you may choose Under Armour products for the first week, branded water bottles the second, school sweatshirts the third, and so on. Keep in mind that this is a great chance to move slower-selling items, or capitalize on rising trends or seasonal products.

Step three: Embellish a little

Download: custom Snappy Hour marketing materials
Download: custom Snappy Hour marketing materials
Download Materials

One of the best parts about using Snapchat for marketing is that you can make your sale or event as simple or as complicated as you like. So theme it around a traditional happy hour and have fun with it! Want to dress it up a little? Serve some snappy appetizers during the sale. Make it a themed event? Declare it to be “Team Tuesday” or “Free (with purchase) Friday.” Invite your customers to bring a friend with a “2 for 1” special that gives double the discount.

Step four: Promote, using as many channels as possible

To find out what’s on sale and when, your customers will have to become your followers. In the meantime, use your existing social media accounts (like Facebook and Twitter) and our free, customizable marketing materials to spread the word. Hang up posters around campus, print out stickers and bag stuffers and put signage at your counter. Don’t forget to enlist your student employees as well!

Step five: Snap to it!

Take and send your Snap. Make sure you include the percentage off, any specific stipulations and the date/time the item will be on sale. If you have many exclusions, you may want to print those off and put them in the shot (as long as they’ll be clearly readable in the picture).

Step six: Gauge your results

Did your sale have a good turnout? How many customers heard about it by word of mouth (it’s inevitable that this will happen) and how many saw the actual Snap? Did you send it at an ideal time? What should you change?

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