Snapchat has been seen as the social media for kids because of the rapid early adoption rate for teens. Of course teens embraced it, the app seems uniquely built for them.

Living in the now and not dwelling on the past is a user behavior of teenagers and a fundamental of Snapchat. If you ask anyone about the app they will inevitably say, ”isn’t that the one where your posts go away after 24 hours?” They’re right. That was the single biggest turn off to marketers and it’s what kept the platform pure and let it grow organically for the first few years of its existence.

Snapchat was made for events. 

Snaps are temporary but, really, aren’t most social media posts? Sure you can shop someone or stalk them to get their history but for the most part what we post on Facebook or Instagram shows up in our followers feeds and is never see it again. This is nothing new. Snapchat just formalizes the disposableness of social media communications.  It also does one better, it uses FOMO to create an addiction.

The Snapchat tipping point for the events industry.

I know Snapchat is going to be huge for the events industry. It’s just a matter of how quickly everyone else gets there. I know this because Malcolm Gladwell’s seminal book, “The Tipping Point” has given us the vocabulary we need to describe a world of exponential change and how to see it coming. The Tipping Point is described as a moment of critical mass of momentum that spreads like wildfire. I believe that just happened for Snapchat and the events industry.

Snapchat has invested its future in the events industry

As as closed platform, Snapchat’s ability to gain revenue from brands comes in the form of photo and video filters. Filters are ways to enhance photos similar to what Instagram allows you to do by overlaying different colours, lighting, and effects over images and videos. Unlike Instagram, creative images can be added to Snaps to give context and those are now branded.

If you weren’t there at that time, you can’t share that filter and that’s taking advantage of the same behaviours that drive attendees to come to our events.

People follow authentic cool people anywhere they go

The next tipping point comes from early adopters who change the game. While the native people of any given country or area can claim they were there first, conquerors who come later are often the ones who set the tone for the culture that will last. The same can be said of influencers, mavens, and thought leaders.

Canaries in the mind shaft aka early adopters

If you are struggling to find your voice on the platform, let me offer you some advice. Don’t jump in head first. Like all social media platforms, this one has its own unwritten rules for engagement. Before you send a single snap, spend a week or more watching what others are doing.

Snapchat has staying power because they are making long-term smart decisions about their future, every other platform is emulating what they are doing, and they’ve learned from the mistakes of other platforms. Twitter didn’t make money from hashtags and no one “owns” a hashtag which was a misstep. Snapchat Filters are different. There’s context built into them and it’s brandable. How do you use social media for events?

Happy planning!