Social Media

Snapchat Geofilter Update Hints at Expanded Brand Opportunities

July 18, 2014

Earlier this week, Snapchat – the app famous for its self-destructing pictures and messages – announced its newest feature: Geofilters. Users in select markets can now add location-based filters (in the form of text or graphics ) as overlays over their snaps. Examples featured in the brand’s announcement video (below) include SoulCycle, The Getty Museum and Disney Land, among others.

Geofilters: Not a monetization move – yet
Although it would appear this update is the company’s first big play to generate revenue, Snapchat has confirmed that the first round of Geofilters are not paid media buys. A spokesperson from Snapchat toldTechCrunch that the company “can’t comment on future plans around monetization, but [Snapchat] think[s] that the Geofilters are really fun and are excited for people to discover them.”

What Geofilters Mean for Brands
Snapchat – which features a sizable user-base of the much sought-after Millennial target – has proven to be a tough social platform for most brands to crack. From the platform-specific quirkiness needed, to the challenge of building a large audience, the app has only seen a few brands leverage it well, but that could soon change with the introduction of Geofilters. Instead of requiring brands to maintain a full presence on the platform and dealing with the aforementioned challenges, they may have the opportunity to sponsor geo-specific areas soon enough.

If we let ourselves run with the thought that Snapchat will open the door for brand sponsorships or partnerships, it’s not hard to imagine the many opportunities that would accompany that. Destination based events –like the World Cup or Coachella for example – could provide a massive user base to tap into, whereas more focused activations could appeal to more niche demographics in specific locales.

On a platform known for its ephemeral and fun nature, marketers and brands should be excited about the strategic and creative opportunities that may soon be feasible with the location-based nature of Geofilters.

Cover photo via Phone Arena