By: Hal Conick

Marketing News

June 13, 2016


Use these tips as a primer for joining the party on Snapchat.

If you aren’t on Snapchat, you’re most likely old. Don’t take offense, statistics confirm as much: 60% of its audience is between 13 and 24 years old, and 63% falls into the 18- to 34-year-old age range. Even though the app is being heavily used by younger generations, marketers of all ages still need to pay attention.

2015 comScore report found Snapchat reaches 11% of Americans, a number that has likely gone up as Snapchat’s daily video views increased by 400% (from 2 billion to 10 billion from May 2015 to May 2016), Bloomberg reports. This could be good news for marketers, who have been quickly making their way onto the app. Re/Code reports that Snapchat ads are seen anywhere from 500,000 to 1 million times per day, a tantalizing opportunity for marketers to get straight onto the phones of young users.

Age doesn’t mean you can’t find your way on Snapchat, whether you’re a marketer trying to find an innovative way to brand, someone trying to catch some extra sports action or interested in playing with the next generation of social media. Time Magazine’s John Patrick Pullen wrote “The Ultimate Adult’s Guide to Snapchat,” giving many tips for navigating the app. Here are five tips from the post on how you can make sense of the social media phenomena:


  1. Camera displays when app is opened. Snapchat is about “instant expression,” company founder Evan Spiegel has said. This is why new users should not be surprised to find the camera pop up as soon as they open the app rather than a stream of posts as with most social media sites. Be prepared to dive right in and start snapping.

  1. Videos or pictures that you post as your story will last for 24 hours before disappearing. If you send one to friends, it will disappear as soon as they watch it with the option to replay it once. Don’t worry: You’ll get a notification when someone re-watches one of your privately sent Snaps.

snapchat-story 2

  1. Menus work a bit differently on Snapchat. Pullen notes that users can swipe to other areas of the service. “For instance, from the camera, swipe to the right and the chat screen will appear, swipe down and your account preferences will drop in, and swipe left to view other users’ snaps,” Pullen writes.


  1. The “Discover Screen” aggregates posts from media outlets. The “Discover” screen on Snapchat is where users can find posts from media companies like ESPN, CNN and many others. This is also where you can find stories from local events in your city.

snapchat-discover 3

  1. Chats disappear too. Instead of the SMS format of being able to review your chat history forever, Snapchat chats will disappear immediately after you view them.


snapchat-chatscreen 4


Key Takeaways
What? Not on Snapchat? You’re likely older than 34, as 63% of the app’s users fall between the ages of 18 and 34.

So what? Even though the base is young, the implications are huge for marketers. The app has seen a 400% increase in video views from this year to last year, with Snapchat ads viewed as many as 1 million times per day.
Now what? It’s not too late to join the teens and twenty-somethings. Getting to know your way around the app is the first step.


Hal Conick is a staff writer for the AMA’s magazines and e-newsletters. He can be reached at or on Twitter at @HalConick.

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