The Power of Snapchat: 5 Brands Who Are Doing It Right
By Julie Graham / August 3, 2016

Over 100 million people, mostly millennials, are currently using Snapchat – the popular new app that allows users to easily message friends, view stories and fun moments from around the world and explore news.

Acquiring 100 million users is quite the accomplishment and companies are quickly seeing the power their brand can have by being top of mind (and in the photos) of these snapchatters. Brands are monetizing on the powerful capabilities available through the platform by being able to get totally authentic with their fans and customers. It’s offering a more guerrilla, yet radical approach to relating to a target audience through transparency and brand personality.

The beauty of Snapchat is that it’s a low-cost and highly personal communication medium. But more importantly, it allows brands to give their customer a backstage pass into their personal narrative. And every marketer knows the power of a good story.

There are quite a few ways to communicate through Snapchat, but most Marketers are turning to vertical video and clips, which currently dominate the space. The type of video content for each market is varied and there is a myriad of content strategies available.

AdWeek Snapchat

BlueHornet has complied the top 5 brands that are strategically and successfully using Snapchat to relate to their audience in an altogether, human-centric and buzzy-brand awareness way.

General Electric

As a multi-billion dollar national conglomerate, GE jumped right on board the Snapchat train. They actively developed an effective presence on the platform by revealing their nerdy persona and connecting with their geeky counterpart audience members. For example, in order to encourage an interest in science, their Snapchat account answers user questions about scientific concepts in a fun and easy to understand way. Here’s a snap from one of their posts: (the below is a Vine video, but they posted this same video on their Snapchat account). 

Caption: Bill Nye did his part. Now it’s your turn. Create your own #EmojiScience experiment and we’ll revine a few of our favorites. #6SecondScience


The food delivery empire is known for merging creative marketing with personalized interactions. As one of the only Snapchat brands to interact with almost every incoming snap through multimedia, they’ve successfully built an active community. Their trick? Being dedicated to personifying their brand voice through one-on-one interaction, which is why they send out messages that require responses. From exclusive coupons, giveaways, promotional contests and recruiting efforts, the Snapchat community is definitely listening. Here’s one of GrubHub’s campaigns that reveals how artistry can help your brand stand out from all the other video content on the platform. 

Grub Hub Fast Company

Red Bull

Snapchat also holds the record for success from it’s effective use of celebrity endorsements. Red Bull really hit the jackpot when they gave “Big Air” gold medalist, X games champion and Canadian snowboarder, Mark McMorris, domination over their Snapchat account. Exhibiting excellent knowledge of their target audience and capitalizing on transparency, Red Bull struck gold by letting users get an inside glimpse of Mark’s extreme sports lifestyle. Mark’s snapchat journey begins in a local San Diego surf shop and ends in the mountains of Big Bear, giving users a first hand taste of the real excitement behind the brand. The feedback was positive, follower numbers increased and users had fun alongside Mark and all of his displayed adventures.

Red Bull


The Super Bowl hit big with it’s epic sponsored advertising using the Snapchat lens last year, which acted as a virtual filter for selfies. Gatorade was the sponsor for their GIF campaign featuring pro tennis player Serena Williams getting doused with a gatorade bath. The best part? The Pepsi Co owned Gatorade released the lens to let anyone get a gatorade bath! By the end of the day the sponsored lens had over 100 million views. Want to follow suite with Gatorade? Learn how to make your own lens here.

Gatorade GIf


Snapchat’s short-lived messaging concept makes it the perfect match for limited time offer marketing. Groupon succeeded at doing what they’re best at – promoting limited time offers, by leveraging the power of Snapchat. The promotional mogul gained 700 followers within one week of starting a Snapchat by pushing out daily challenges with prizes in exchange for brand interaction. The daily deal company prompted users to follow them and announced a killer deal for the very first snap viewer, tempting followers with $4.50 concert tickets to a concert and meet and greet for rapper Wiz Khalifa. In that same week Groupon exchanged 1000 messages with their followers, gained 250 screenshots (which can be used to measure intent) and gained 100 followers a day.

As you can see, marketers and brands alike are understanding and leveraging the power of Snapchat to their business advantage. And if you or your brand aren’t harnessing this powerful possibility just yet – the time to start snapping is now. Not sure where or how to start? Begin by following brands you like and competitors or partners of your business. Not only will they inspire you with ideas you didn’t think of – they may provide you with the competitive drive you’ll need to truly create a rockstar Snapchat account.

The best tip we can provide? Come get silly with us here at BlueHornet! Follow us on Snapchat at “bluehornetemail” to see all the crazy fun we have with email marketing as you get an inside look at our day to day lives at our headquarters in sunny San Diego!

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