What is Snapchat?
Snapchat is a picture (and video) messaging app that launched in 2011.
Though you do have the facility to take a screenshot of photos (and save them as image files for later viewing) Snapchat is exceptional in that all pictures (as well as videos) have a very short lifespan. After a short period of time, they vanish forever, making the app transitory in nature. This is very appealing to the masses, as society becomes more impatient. It is also appealing because people’s likelihood of sharing something is much higher if it will disappear quickly. As of May 2014, 700 million snapchat pictures and videos were being sent a day by fans of the app. This means hat Snapchat is being used for both communication, and entertainment.
Snapchat has added features like graphics and stickers to the app, to make it extra entertaining.
Because of the immediate popularity of Snapchat, Facebook allegedly offered to get Snapchat for $3 billion. One of the cofounders of the program refused the cash offer, and as a result, Facebook created a similar program, Slingshot, which failed.
How to use Snapchat and who is using it?
Snapchat is used by everyone, but the primary users are younger adults and adolescents. Snapchat is predominantly a success among teens, according to a number of research companies, though it is attracting new demographics daily and is catching on with Viners (users of the app Vine). Many celebrities and those with fan followings enjoy Snapchat, because it gives them a direct outlet to their fans, that doesn’t require as much pre-production or finessing.
Snapchat is becoming the new way to advertise, as it gives organizations a way to direct engage with customers and fans that can be mass-replicated. It also creates a personal connection, which is important in building brand allegiance. It is essentially important for companies to engage with younger consumers, because they not only have expendable income, but they can create a loyalty that can span a lifetime on consumerism. Many experts believe that Snapchat is the key to achieving this relationship.