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Snapchat: How Retailers Can Capitalize on the Craze

Branded filters cost a pretty penny, but the potential for exposure is huge.

 

Snapchat filters are not-so-slowly becoming the way Millennials prefer to communicate (at least, for fun). While older generations might find the filters silly, some retailers are capitalizing on their potential––that is, the fact that so many Millennials are exposed to them on a daily basis.

 

Snapchat filters use special effects to turn selfies (both still and video) into an animated image of the user’s choosing, such as a cat, a dog or a cowboy. The “snaps” disappear in 24 hours. Several celebrities––particularly those admired by Millennials––are avid Snapchat users, and whether they know it or not, many act as advertisers for brands via the products visible in their Snapchats.

 

So, what’s involved for a brand to deliberately capitalize on Snapchat’s momentum? Basically, three things: investment, strategy and archives. Let’s take a look:

 

1. Investment. Sponsored Snapchat filters are supposedly worth around $750,000 per filter for holidays. Weekday filters are around $500,000. You might be wondering which brands would ever invest that kind of capital for a simple filter. Fox Studios did for “The Peanuts Movie” around the Halloween time period, as did Gatorade during the Super Bowl.

 

2. Strategy. Remember that snaps go away in 24 hours, which understandably undermines the huge price tag. It’s a huge reason that the branded filter has to be done right. Think humor, impact and the capability to create buzz, but without being over-the-top or too “in your face.” The filter should relate to the brand without being overtly focused on the product. A toothpaste brand, for instance, could produce a filter where users brush their teeth to a sparkling sheen. The goal is to make users forget the content is branded at all––in other words, a seamless experience.

 

3. Preservation. In just 24 hours after it’s posted, a Snapchat photo or video is gone. But your branded content can be preserved via a compilation video of various users interacting with the filter. If it’s good enough (and funny enough), the compilation video will be shared on other social media platforms, even further expanding exposure.

 

Last May, Snapchat co-founder and CEO Evan Spiegel estimated the company’s daily active users at 100 million. More than 65 million of them, he said, send photos or videos to friends daily. Millennials absolutely love their Snapchat, and though it’s not an easy task for brands to take advantage of this particular medium, the dividends could be huge.

What’s Better than Television for Kids Today? Mobile Devices

Hand holding mobile smart phoneKid’s Today Prefer Watching Videos on a Tablet or Mobile Device Versus a TV.

Cable ratings for kids have been low and a new study might tell us why. Miner & Co. Studio released a report that revealed that televisions are no longer what kids prefer to watch when they have access to smartphones and tablets.

According to the report, 57% of 800 surveyed parents say their kids, now, would rather watch a video on a mobile device versus on a television. In fact, handheld devices are so popular with children that the parents Miner & Co. surveyed admitted taking away a tablet as punishment to correct behavior, making their children watch a television instead.

To further prove the popularity of mobile devices with kids, some children will delay a treat a few minutes in order to continue using their device. When parents were asked if given the choice between dessert and spending time on a tablet, 41% responded that their children would choose the mobile device.

So how does this impact the television industry, in the future, as the little ones get bigger? So far this year, Turner’s Carton Network is the only ad-supported kids’ channel that has not been hit with an immense C3 decline in ratings. It appears that Nickelodeon is suffering the most with a 30% decline in kids aged 2-11.

Robert Miner, CEO of Miner & Co., believes one reason that children would rather watch a tablet versus a television is because a mobile device offers “autonomy” in a way that a television cannot. “We used to use the term ‘platform agnostic,’ but that conveys the sense that you don’t care one way or the other which platform you’re using,” Minor said. “With kids, that pretty obviously is not the case. So, I like to say that we’re ‘platform polygamists.’ All platforms are basically sister wives now.”

Of all the findings from the survey, the most surprising and strange is that 39% of parents say that, often, their children view the same thing on different devices, at the same time. Why is that? I won’t even hazard a guess on this one. Nevertheless, overall, a very interesting study by Minor & Co.

Image by iceviking – via freeimages.com

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Scan-and-Go Options Could Boost In-store Sales

Recent study shows how budget shoppers spend more if they check the prices in real time, rather than a tally in their heads.scanGo

If you’re anything like me, you walk into the grocery store with two goals: 1) to (hopefully) walk out with everything on your list, and 2) to checkout with a final total that falls into your spending budget.

Shopping can be a challenge in general, especially when products aren’t price marked and a customer service representative is nowhere to be found. Often times I end up spending way less than I budgeted, simply because I’m so careful to spend within my means. And considering the rise in scan-and-go options in-stores, and the results of recent studies — I’m clearly not alone.

A recent study actually revealed that even non-budget shoppers leaned toward cheaper, private label brands to save money when unsure about the total cost of their cart. Often times shoppers go down the aisle and try to estimate whether their purchases will add up to less than what they originally budgeted for, which leads them to spend less overall. The study found that the addition of scan-and-go features in stores can actually help shoppers spend more, which in turn brings in more revenue for retailers.

The study, which was later used to comprise the report title “Smart Shopping Carts: How Real-Time Feedback Influences Spending,” compared shopping habits between non-budget and budget shoppers. The study found that budget shoppers who tallied their cart’s value spent almost 35-percent more than those who didn’t, while non-budget shoppers actually spent 25-percent less when they added up their cart. Interesting, right?

The research indicated that while non-budget shoppers walk into the store without premeditated concern about pricing, they found themselves still choosing less-expensive products. So what does it all mean for shoppers like you and me?

We’ll probably get more for our money by using the scan-and-go option in stores. Sure, we want to spend less overall but getting more bang for the buck, well that always takes precedence.

Photo By: Glen Wallace -via Flickr

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More Shoppers Taking Photos In Store

More and more consumers using their phones to take photos at the retail level.
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Photo-centric apps are quickly rising to the top of the social media hierarchy. Users constantly upload images detailing the routine of their daily lives, so it’s no shocker that picture taking has become another mobile frenzy making its way into the retail store.

According to a recent study by comScore, picture taking is among the most common of consumers’ in-store behaviors. Surely snapping selfies in the chip aisle didn’t help boost this phenomenon — so, what exactly are shoppers taking photos of and why?

The answer could be clear as day: shoppers take photos to send to others via text message, asking them their opinion on product purchases. The study also suggests that shoppers take the photos and blast them through their social media outlets, like Facebook and Twitter either as a foundation for stating their own opinion on the product, or asking for feedback from their peers.

And, then there’s the Snapchat phenomenon. If you’re not familiar with Snapchat, it’s an extremely popular app where users send each other photos that disappear after a matter of seconds. The idea is that you’re able to send tid-bits of your life to your friends (some of which are totally unflattering), without worrying that the picture will show up again. Retailers caught on to this almost instantly, using the app as a way to connect with consumers in a flash. It’s a great way to send a quick message that still contains a visual impact.

Instagram, too, is a great tool that is becoming more-and-more popular with consumers. While it used to be a hub for amateur photogs to highlight their work, Instagram has turned into a mega social media network with a huge visual impact. Retailers especially can use the app to upload photos of their store, products, or even happenings.

Photo By: Patrick Hoesly via Flickr

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