Yesterday, Snapchat released a new feature via their mobile app. If you’re not familiar, Snapchat is the app that allows you to send pictures to your friends without the risk of it being held as blackmail! Yes, the pictures disappear after so many seconds into the technological abyss (I’d assume this is where your emptied desktop trash goes as well). What Snapchat has harnessed with promoting this new feature is advertising to their users.
How so? By sending this video to each Snapchat user:
Amongst the glitter, glam, and dollar signs is a golden nugget of marketing – sometimes the best people to advertise to are those that already love your product. Something commonly seen in technology and apps today is not only how fast can apps adapt and update to serve their users, but also how can they serve as a one-stop-shop.
These days, you may forget your wallet on the couch, or your keys by the door, but you never forget your phone. Apps like Apple Pay and Venmo have harnessed using phones for financial exchanges, no wallet necessary! Venmo is an especially interesting app since it is purely based off of exchanging money with your friends and contacts.
Snapcash, the new feature on Snapchat where users can exchange money, functions exactly like Venmo. The cash-exchange feature allows users to send cash via the Snapchat app to their friends by simply writing a message starting with a “$”. It’s as easy as sending a selfie! As long as users are willing to input their credit or debit card information, the Snapchat world is their oyster! And with the growing popularity of online shopping and financial exchanges, who isn’t comfortable with pulling out the card and sending money accordingly?
It’s interesting to see apps adapt to these kinds of user behaviors. Goodbye to the days of not being able to go out to lunch because you forgot your wallet and are afraid to ask someone to buy for you. With Snapcash and Venmo, you can pay anyone back with the touch of a button. This kind of functionality allows for an easy flow of currency from one friend to another.
The toughest part of adding functionality or a new app is getting people to USE IT. That is what Snapchat’s marketing team has perfected by using their own platform (sending a video snap) to all of their users, clearly explaining what it is they’ve added in an entertaining and fun way. Users also didn’t have to go out of their way to find out what the addition was or how to use it, it was all there in their Snap feed ready for the watching.
Apps face an issue that is two-fold: 1. How do we promote our app? And 2. How do we get people to USE our app and its additional functionalities? According to Snapchat, use the platform, market to your existing users, and advertise with a bang (green sparkly costumes and all)!