Snapchat “My Story” Feature Allows Artists to get Weird in Public
Snapchat is a tricky platform to figure out, but it has become a powerful force in marketing especially to the younger generation. Visual artists should already have a solid presence on social media outlets such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Tumblr, and Pinterest (you can click on the links to view how mine are setup.) What about Snapchat? Snapchat initially was created as a way for teenagers to send quick little images to each other that would disappear and be gone forever, but it has slowly turned into a cool place for brands to hang out and advertise to kids. In fact, the current minimum threshold to start advertising on the platform is $100,000. Snapchat has roughly 100 million active daily users, and 80% of those users fall into the 15 to 35 year age range, which is a highly targeted demographic.
Visual artists should be accustomed to adding their artwork to social media and getting that sweet instant gratification of likes and comments from fans all over the world. Snapchat, however, does not work that way. There is no way to like, comment, link or repost. So what can you do? They have added a new feature called My Story, which allows people to publicly follow your content from the previous day. The image or video can last up to 10 seconds, and it will disappear after 24 hours, so there is no permanent evidence of your amazing feats of creativity unless you choose to save and post elsewhere. There are very fun filters within the app (face swap and rainbow puke) which is one reason it has become so popular. You can also doodle on the images which is perfect for artists. I recommend documenting your art and studio space, as well as having a sense of humor about yourself and showing random things in your life as they happen. It can be difficult to cultivate a following. People have to know who you are, and physically search for you on Snapchat, so it’s best to share your username on your website as well as other social media platforms. There are some users, like GeeOhSnap, that have found a huge following by doing very detailed and amusing doodles on photos. Remember, your name is your brand, and I recommend using your name as your username or add “art” after your name.
So, if you haven’t already, download the Snapchat app for your phone and get your profile set up and start adding content to My Story. Go ahead and follow me at shawnmcnulty and search for your friends to get something started. I also recommend following a couple of Minnesota artists who have great accounts: LittleBrownMush (Alec Soth) and dbowmanstudio (David Bowman.) You should also check out The 11th Second, which is a cool website by professional Snapchatter Cyrene Quiamco that showcases great artistic users to follow.