Filters are one of the more popular features on Snapchat, from face recognition, geo-filters, fast-forward and rewind, the list goes on. This past week, Snapchat just announced that its users can now create and customize their own filters.
In their most recent marketing communications, Snapchat released a video that showed both how to use this new feature, and why anyone would want to use it.
It was absolutely genius.
“You can use their website to custom-build your filter, which includes a geographic area, a date, and a time for the filter to pop up. You then have to submit a graphic that lines up with Snapchat’s guidelines, which include no photos of people, no contact information, and no covering up too much of the screen. Snapchat will personally approve your filter before it becomes available, and the process will take about one day” (Seventeen Magazine, 2016).
The video Snapchat released explaining these instructions was so simple and enticing, a person with no graphic design experience could feel as if they could do it! There is however, one stipulation to this new feature: MONEY.
I believe the idea for this “customize your own filter” came in response to its users complaining about purchasing “face filters,” which was a widely received feature that was once free. The technology used face recognition to alter the user’s face with filters such as: crying tears, puppy dog face, and the most famous: the-rainbow-out-of-the-mouth filter.
Now, however, Snapchat has found new ways outside of advertising money to monetize, which is great for business. Snapchat has continuously proved itself with an ability to innovate and keep its users coming back. The only stipulation to this awesome new feature, is of course, cost. Users would essentially be paying the company for their own creation, and the right for others to use it. With their target marketing being millennials and Generation Z, money isn’t always at their finger tips, so it will be interesting to see how Snapchat’s users will receive this new add-on.
In sum, I leave you with the following thoughts:
• Do you think users will embrace this new feature despite the cost?
• What other marketing communications could Snapchat use in order to persuade its users to use this new feature?
• How can companies use this feature to its advantage? Would it be useful, or detrimental?