Independent Thinking Blog

The Age of Snapchat

I’ve been playing around with Snapchat.

By “playing around,” I mean that I set up an account and started watching how various brands are creating content for the medium. I’m looking at stories. I’m exploring how live stories can offer fresh perspectives on a place or an event.

Mostly I’m just curious about where Snapchat might fit into a company’s digital strategy.

Because, really, I don’t think my friends and I are likely to be trading snaps anytime soon.

It’s not about age.

Snapchat icon

It’s a question of approach.

I regularly use a handful of platforms and apps for myself and/or my business: Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and (to a lesser extent) Google+ and YouTube.  I have accounts on several more (e.g., Instagram) that I dip into less often.

At the same time, I look at, watch, and test a lot of different platforms, channels, and apps.

I’m interested in how brands use Snapchat and users interact.

[bctt tweet=”“How brands use Snapchat is very different from using the app to send snaps to friends.””]

This is very different from using Snapchat to watch branded content or message photos and videos to friends. I’m not trying to figure out how to send a snap. That’s easy. I’m trying to figure out what kind of snaps might resonate with a particular audience. (Assuming that audience is using Snapchat.)

It’s not about youth either.

The Harris Poll has new research on American attitudes toward technology. It suggests that Baby Boomers are very cranky and Gen Xers are afraid they might become obsolete.

These attitudes are obsolete.

Poll of American Attitudes Toward Technology

My attitudes are very Millennial. (I am not a Millennial.)

This technology isn’t going anywhere. We’re not giving up our smartphones and we’re not going back to penning all our letters by hand and holding our questions until we can get to a library to look something up in a printed reference book.

This is not about Snapchat.

I don’t have to use Snapchat and you don’t either.

It’s no more or less inherently useful than many other platforms. For example, how many hours of TV do you watch?

Technology isn’t making us lazy, illiterate (as long as you don’t read my text messages), or incapable of having an intelligent conversation.

I get Snapchat a lot better than I get this Luddite point of view.

The world has changed, and we can’t walk back our connectivity. Really, though, why would you want to?

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