Why Snapchat Changed Its Name, The Game And My Mind

September 30, 2016

Why I Changed My Mind About Snapchat

Snapchat discreetly announced this week that they changed their name to Snap Inc.

This subtle name change comes as a result of the Snapchat brand gaining more traction as a popular household name in the last few years.

You know your brand is doing well when it has been turned into a commonly used verb (ie. “Google it.” “Snap me.” “Oreo up.” I’m not sure about the last one, but maybe it’ll catch on?)

In addition, they are adding a physical product to their portfolio called Spectacles, which are glasses that will likely compete with GoPro. Considering they tout themselves primarily as a camera company, it makes sense why they would shorten their name to Snap.

Not to mention, shorter names are typically better for marketing and branding.

The fact that Snap has gone so mainstream is pretty impressive considering its rough start with such a poor reputation among adults.

Its bad reputation was a result of the app’s enticement for kids to exchange inappropriate pics with one another since images disappear after a few seconds.

In fact, I was adamantly opposed to parents allowing their kids to use Snap, and even made a video in 2013 encouraging parents to ban the app from their kids’ devices.

However, even I have jumped on board and I now utilize Snap more than any other social media platform.

Here are 4 reasons why I now use Snap on a consistent basis, even within the context of youth ministry:

  1. Improved transparency

    Snap used to not allow users to take screenshots of pics. This encouraged teenagers to send scandalous pics to each other since images disappeared after a few seconds.

    However, kids still found a way to capture images before they disappeared, so Snap eventually just built in the feature so now it’s part of the app.

    Not only did Snap add the ability to screenshot images, but the app now tells you who took a screenshot of what image.

    By building the screenshot capability directly into the app, students now realize that no photo is guaranteed to disappear, so they have wisely become more cautious about what types of images they post both privately and publicly.

    With the improved transparency, Snap has gained notoriety and has wiped away much of its bad reputation.

  2. Snap’s gone mainstream

    Most major news outlets and dozens of brands now use Snap, and it reaches far more students in my sphere of influence than Facebook and is on par with Instagram.

  3. Snap reaches a massive number of students

    On any given day, Snap reaches 41% of 18-34 year olds throughout the US. That’s one impressive number.

    snapchat teenage usage

    There are reports claiming that Facebook still has quite a large following of teenagers, but in my sphere of influence, Facebook is already dead among teens. Snapchat is rapidly becoming just as popular—if not more popular—than Instagram.

  4. Cheap advertising

    Most media outlets sell advertising based on CPM (cost per 1000 impressions) or CPC (cost per click). However, Snap uses neither when advertising with their unique geofilters.

    A filter is an overlay that a user can place over their own picture, such as the name of a city or an event. While some filters are available nationwide, others are available based on geolocation.

    Using a geofilter, an advertiser can create a marketing campaign that is targeted for a specific time and location, and the impressions are unlimited.

    For example, if you buy $5 worth of ads on Facebook, you might reach your marketing budget for the day after 1000 people see your ad in a CPM campaign.

    With Snap, if you spend $5, you could potentially have 100 uses in a 3-hour period and make 10,000 impressions. While that example shows a campaign that is 10x more effective, I have actually conducted Snap campaigns that had an ROI of 50x greater than Facebook.

    If you want to run a CPC campaign where users are able to click on a button or call to action, Snap currently only offers such capability to larger national brands that they handpick.

    However, if you want to generate buzz or create brand recognition at a specific geotargeted location like a CPM campaign, the ROI for Snap can be much higher.

    Not only have I jumped onto the Snap bandwagon because of these 4 reasons, but with their fresh branding and new Spectacles, I believe the platform will explode with even more popularity in the next 12 months.

    That is, until too many parents and businesses create their own accounts and the teens don’t think it’s cool anymore.

If you want to capitalize on using Snap for your own marketing campaign for a small business or ministry, check out my post on how to make a killer Snap marketing campaign.








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