If you’ve downloaded the Snapchat’s latest update in the past few weeks, you may have noticed a new icon in the social platform’s vertical menu.
Snapchat’s “Paperclip” is a newer feature that allows users to include clickable links (to webpages, YouTube videos, etc.) in their posts.
Previously, only ad campaigns and Discover stories could include links (read: paid content). Now, the capability is available to the every-user.
The tool gives Snapchat the edge on Instagram, which only allows users to post links in the bio sections of their profiles. Unless however, you have more than 10,000 followers; these accounts can attach links within their Instagram Stories.
Instagram has made a habit of following its social counterpart’s suit—last year’s Instagram Stories is eerily similar to Snap, Inc.’s own story feature—so it wouldn’t be surprising to see the tool replicated soon. But for now, Snap is the only platform where these embedded links are available for the average user’s posts.
OK, so the update is new and exciting. But what does this all mean for your brand?
Here are three ways that using Snapchat’s clickable links feature can help your brand succeed (and we’re talkin’ more than just on the social front):
More opportunities to promote content
Let’s start with the obvious: This feature serves as yet another platform to share your brand’s content or brand message. Before the update, the only way a brand could add links was if it bought an ad. Now, Snapchat’s linking capabilities give you an easier way to gain more organic traffic. 158 million people are using Snapchat daily and open the app an average of 18 times a day. By adding Snap into the mix of platforms where you share your brand’s content, you expose your company to a wider reach of potential consumers. The tool also allows linking to other social networks, which enables brands to cross-promote their different social media accounts.
Track different ad campaigns on the platform
Up until now, Snapchat’s reporting capabilities have been less than ideal, with the majority of data accessible only through paid subscriptions. Snap’s links, however, take the marketer a giant leap closer toward insights on brand effectiveness on the platform. Snapchat itself doesn’t have embedded reporting tools, but 24 hours after you post a Snap with a link, you can go to your Google Analytics account to analyze Snapchat-delivered website traffic. If someone visited your company’s site through the Snap link, you’ll be able to see who they are and from where they hail.
Provide channel-exclusive content
As previously mentioned, the new tool is a great way to disseminate current content. But you don’t just have to stop there. Go beyond using Snapchat as another platform to share existing brand assets and use it as a medium for exclusive content for your loyal followers. Platform-specific content gives followers incentive to check all social platforms and to return to see what’s new. In 2016, roughly 44 percent of the 1,117 U.S.-based Snapchat users between the ages of 13-24 who said they had used Live Stories and/or Discover did so on at least a daily basis, so there’s already been support of Snap-centric content among the app’s user base. You can even use your newfound information on platform demographics to tailor articles or videos to users so that they are more likely to consume.
Snapchat’s new clickable links feature opens up a lot of new possibilities for how your brand can interact with your consumer base. Take advantage of the platform’s new capabilities and soon your brand should reap the rewards.
Not sure how to use the Paperclip?
We recently tried out the new functionality in promoting our internship program. Check out the process below:
Start with your image or video. When you have your content ready to go, click on the paperclip icon on the right-hand vertical menu.
Insert your chosen URL. Links that you’ve attached in past will appear below, as well as web addresses you’ve just copied. Press “Go” to enter.
Before attaching your link to snap, a preview of the page will appear. That way, you’ll be able to ensure the site will display properly. If your page looks correct, select “Attach to Snap.”
The paperclip icon will now be highlighted to indicate a link is attached. However, the link won’t actually display in the snap until posted/sent. Add in any desired text, keeping in mind the icon for link functionality will be displayed in the bottom center of the screen.
Whether posting the snap to your account’s Story or sending directly to others, users will be able to swipe up to view your link. Now, time to test it out for yourself!