Social Shopping: Instagram and Snapchat

Millennials love social media and spend countless hours on the popular Snapchat and Instagram apps every day. For retailers, restaurants and many other businesses, creating accounts for these two apps could drive sales like never before.  Creating an account for either platform can be done within five minutes, AND on a smartphone. You can even promote one app by posting with the other!

Once you create an account, personalizing and uploading pictures is a fun process to connect people to your business.

Instagram

For Instagram, begin adding people in your phone’s contact list. You will want to put your business address in the bio of your page. Add a link to your website in that section too, because this is the only part of Instagram that you can insert clickable links. In settings, make sure that your account page is public.

Post a promotion or two up there. Take pictures of your storefront, new merchandise, employees at work, as well as pictures with promotional deals, like say, “10% off this new necklace that is now back in stock.” A good variety of photos that are all promoting your brand and image is essential. Edit your pictures and short videos on the app so that you are posting exactly how you want it displayed. Instagram editing tools include filters, cropping, rotating, and creating collages. There is also an option to add your location to each photo and tag people or brands in the picture. Add captions with details of the image, emojis, and hashtags for trending topics and slogans. One to five posts per day is the norm for most businesses as this range keeps you relevant without bombarding your followers’ news feed.

Edit your pictures and short videos on the app so that you are posting exactly how you want it displayed. Instagram editing tools include filters, cropping, rotating, and creating collages. There is also an option to add your location to each photo and tag people or brands in the picture. Add captions with details of the image, emojis, and hashtags for trending topics and slogans. One to five posts per day is the norm for most businesses as this range keeps you relevant without bombarding your followers’ news feed.

Instagram & Snapchat Shopping

Instagram has a feature called My Story that your company can also utilize. Along with a picture posting on your account page, you can enable your camera to live stream or post a stored photo or video to the Story option at the top of the newsfeed. Instagram Stories post for 24 hours. On your page, your followers can make comments under the photos and videos you post. Interacting with your followers builds long term customers, and business related questions can be direct messaged privately to your account as well.

Snapchat

Snapchat is no longer just for sharing a selfie, you know, a front facing picture. And sending it to one person at a time is a thing of the past. Today, Snapchat has evolved as an excellent marketing tool for businesses. Like Instagram, setting up an account for your business is easy. Make the username your business name and begin adding contacts from your phone, email lists, and sync to find friends on Facebook. Then, Snapchat offers more options to search for followers. Other Snapchatters can add you by your username, invite, or use the “search nearby” tool. On Snapchat, you can post pictures in real time with the flash button on or off, with filters, captions, and emojis. You can manually draw or write on your photo before sending it out. Don’t worry, on Snapchat; you don’t have to be a professional artist or photographer. You can send your snaps directly to another person through this app. Snapchat also allows you to choose between sending to people one at a time or select a mass of people that have you added as a friend on their app. Videos up to 10 seconds, with or without audio, can also be sent. Plus, you will want to keep in mind that you can start single or group chats on this app.

On Snapchat, you can post pictures in real time with the flash button on or off, with filters, captions, and emojis. You can manually draw or write on your photo before sending it out. Don’t worry, on Snapchat, you don’t have to be a professional artist or photographer. You can send your snaps directly to another person through this app. Snapchat also allows you to choose between sending to one person at a time or select a mass of people that have you added as a friend on their app. Videos up to 10 seconds, with or without audio, can also be sent. Plus, you will want to keep in mind that you can start single or group chats on this app.

Snapchat has a Stories option like Instagram too, and you can post in real time many photos and videos (each video can be up to 10 seconds long). Everyone on your friends list has access to Stories. Unlike a regular Snap, a Story is posted for exactly 24 hours in full term unless you decide to delete it ahead of time. The filters for Snapchat are immaculate because you just swipe your picture to the right with your index finger and if the location settings are turned on, your smartphone will automatically allow you to explore and use geotags on your pictures and videos. You can send and post pictures and videos in real time telling customers about

The filters for Snapchat are very neat because you just swipe your picture to the right with your index finger and if the location settings are turned on, your smartphone will automatically allow you to explore and use geotags on your pictures and videos. You can send and post pictures and videos in real time telling customers about new product and merchandise launches, promotions, events, and what the latest news is at your store or place or business. Tag customers with the @ symbol if they are promoting your brand. If you have a clothing store, take pictures of customers wearing your pieces inside and outside of the store. Take videos of models or brand ambassadors walking the runway in the middle of the store. Snap your chef in the kitchen tossing your iconic pizza or an artsy picture of a salad bar or delicious looking dessert. Most importantly, have fun! Photos promoting a business do not have to be taken by a personal photographer.

You can send and post pictures and videos in real time telling customers about new products and merchandise launches, promotions, events, and what the latest news is at your store or place or business. Tag customers with the @ symbol if they are promoting your brand. If you have a clothing store, take pictures of customers wearing your pieces inside and outside of the store. Take videos of models or brand ambassadors walking the runway in the middle of the store. Snap your chef in the kitchen tossing your iconic pizza or an artsy picture of a salad bar or delicious looking dessert. Most importantly, have fun! Photos promoting a business do not have to be taken by a personal photographer.

Millennials like seeing current trends in real time. We are all living in the moment now and want to see what our favorite stores and businesses are doing. For example, if you own a shoe store. It might be beneficial to customers if they are viewing a snap on your story saying, “New Nikes are in now. Come see us today and get a pair!” It will encourage them to come see you at your location!