Oh SNAP: Sponsored Geofilters, the Revolution of Advertising

Snapchat has taken many risks since its launch in 2011. The risks, however, have been worth the reward. In 2013 they revealed My Story and Discovery features for brands. A year later they introduced geofilters, a new feature that users can only unlock at set locations. It was quick to gain popularity and subsequently built a new opportunity for advertisements.

In June 2015, McDonald’s became the first brand to purchase sponsored geofilters on Snapchat. With an estimated 100 million daily active users, according to Snapchat’s website, not only is this great for businesses, but it’s great for Snapchatters, too. Snapchat opened doors for ads that are fun, interactive, and non-invasive.

Geofilters are an advertising goldmine:

Free advertising!

Well, sort of. While a sponsored geofilter may require a fee, Snapchatters who use your company’s filter will return the investment ten-fold. Think of the millions of photos and video content generated to share with friends at no cost. Let’s face it, geofilters are the photobooth of the 21st century. Everyone wants to take a selfie. What’s better than a selfie? A selfie with a location specific filter. We already know that photo posts drive more traffic on social media than any other posts. We also know that user-generated content is free. It’s a win-win for brands and consumers. Snapchatters love geofilters and brands love the attention from the new geofilters.
 

Bragging rights and exclusivity 

Snapchat users can limit their audience with ease, unlike Facebook’s check-in feature or Instagram’s photo map. Users decide exactly who views their snaps and for how long. This helps Snapchatters build a more genuine experience for their audience. Add a geofilter to the mix and watch as users build custom experiences for the people they think will enjoy the content.
 

You get to be passive

Ads now appear on most social networking apps. The geofilter feature allows users to decide if they want to interact with your sponsored filter. This non-invasive approach attracts millennials. With no pushy pop-ups or ads to watch, users have the opportunity to love your brand on their terms. The idea is to give the consumer a chance to investigate, and if it’s clever, well-designed, and functional, people will want to use it. Therefore, more brand exposure. Simply upload the filter and watch as it quickly spreads feed to feed.
 

An interactive experience

Users are required to interact with the app. Whether that means taking a photo, viewing a story, or sending a message, geofilters become a treasure hunt. Consumers are excited to unlock the filters. Each location opens a door to a new filter, a new selfie, and a new conversation. Whether or not users decide to use the filter, it will still be seen when they swipe. People who catch word of a cool filter will want to visit, even if it’s just to snap a selfie.

Endless opportunity 

Imagine new filters for big events or new products. At Comic-Con, Snapchat included superhero inspired filters. They even introduced religious holiday filters during Ramadan! When word hits that a new geofilter is released expect new traffic.

Snapchat sponsored geofilters are currently in beta testing and are expected to be available to all brands later this year.

Inspired to take on geofilters? What brand geofilters would you like to see? Share your thoughts with us on Twitter @ThinPigMedia!