July 29, 2016

[INFOGRAPHIC] 4 Steps to Using Snapchat For Your Real Estate Business


As a real estate agent, Millennials may not be quite on your radar when it comes to selling a home. But they're emerging from their parents' homes and looking to buy their own. If you're a social media guru already and you're looking to target those elusive Millennials, we've found your new medium; Snapchat. On any given day, Snapchat reaches 41% of all 18 to 34 year-olds in the United States. Imagine advertising an open house event you're hosting directly to your target audience's phone as they snap pictures of their brunch in the neighborhood of the home you're showing. Now you can try it out with Snapchat's On-Demand filters.

Snapchat is a photo messaging app that's known for the 'disappearing' qualities of the pictures you send to your friends. Meaning, receivers of the photos or videos can only see them for up to 10 seconds before they're gone. Growing tremendously, the messaging app has an estimated 150 million users, surpassing Twitter by 10 million.

Start snapping for sales today...

Welcome to Snapchat

If you're still not entirely sure what Snapchat's all about, you're not alone. A brief overview is that Snapchat allows you to send photos and videos to your friends through the app for a particular amount of time - no longer than 10 second though.

A major feature Snapchat rolled out last year was geotagging, or a filter you can add to your picture based on your geographic location. When you snap a picture or video on Snapchat, you can scroll through options to add details like the time and temperature, but if you find yourself in an area where there's a geotag, you can add it to your photo as well.

Geofilters only appear in your Snapchat photos if you're physically within the geofenced area. With the addition of OnDemand GeoFilters, users can now design, create, and submit their filters for a specific time and place (and for a fee) to Snapchat for a particular event. Weddings, birthday parties, or community gatherings are just a few of the events you can create your filter for. And it certainly could come in particularly handy for advertising or alerting people about open houses in their neighborhood as well.

Your GeoFilter Marketing

With a creative On-Demand filter, you could easily grab their attention by advertising for your open house right within their Snapchat. The hardest part? Creating your design. Snapchat has a strict no logo or hashtag (#) policy when it comes to their on-demand filters. And if you don't have the graphic design or photoshop experience, it could feel like a daunting task. There are plenty of graphic designers for hire online that could whip up a design, and there's even a full community on Reddit that discusses filters and offers help to those who may need it.

Once you have your design, the rest is simple. You'll need to geo-fence the area you want your filter to cover on a map and pick the date and time frame you want your filter to be available. The cost is calculated based on the square footage and how many hours the filter will be available. The final catch? The filter may not be approved by the Snapchat gods. Our recommendation is to submit your filter design with at least a week before your open house event. Snapchat says it can take up to 48 hours for your On-Demand filter to be approved and when we tested it, it only took 24 hours but it's worth giving yourself a little leeway.

When it comes to geofencing, go for the neighborhood around your open house, making sure to include any restaurants, shopping or pedestrian areas (and of course the house you're showing too!) Include as much information as possible without making it an advertisement but still keeping it fun, yes that means an image or an icon - but Snapchat won't approve it if it takes up too much of the screen - and have it live for a few hours before the start and through the time of the event as well.

Quick guide to how to make a Snapchat Geofilter:

What's next?

Well try it out! For a smaller area and a shorter amount of time, your marketing experiment in Snapchat will be relatively inexpensive and you could reap plenty of benefits if you're looking to target Millennials or a neighborhood with active Snapchatters. The key here is creating a compelling design and doing a little promotion leading up to it so that people know to check in on Snapchat when they get to the open house.

The good thing about it is it's an experiment and one that could have some major ROI for your next open house, or at least give you another platform to connect with your leads and clients in a more personal way. Plus it's a great way to show off your creative side, and if anything you connect with the neighborhood! Remember, it's not just people at your open house who will see your Geofilter, it's anyone on Snapchat within your geofenced area, make it memorable and create a reference point. Become that top-of-mind real estate agent in your neighborhood and watch the referrals pour in!