• Gigi Kawar

A day in the Life of a Syracuse University Student by Snapchat

Updated: Apr 19, 2018

Snapchat is a social media platform that lets you share a photo or video through your personal newsfeed or as a story. The idea behind #Snapchat is to be able to let your friends know what's happening throughout your day (or a 24-hour period).

Snapchat was initially created as a private messaging platform, where you can send a 10-second video or image privately, but stories were added to provide you with the ability to share stories more publicly and at once.

The 10-second Feature

I believe that Snapchat's10-second feature is a fundamental marketing way to tell a story effectively. I know that sharing an idea, a thought, or an activity in such a short timeframe feels like impossible, but that's why you have 24 hours to show people what your day looks like.

Think about it this way: Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter are all great platforms to tell a story, but would you rather post one picture as a post, or many 10-second pictures and videos that are live and authentic? I definitely choose the latter.

Mojis and Snapchat Stuff

Snapchat comes with many features, including filters typefaces, and mojis — both e- and Bit. Such features provide you with the power to emphasize a message in any way you want, literally. You have so many options to choose from, and you can get creative in so many ways.

If you don't believe me, look at what I did:

Oh yes, I know how to procrastinate.

Being able to draw on Snapchat with a range of different colors is another feature that people tend to overlook. Take advantage of the features you have, they can seriously change a story and how people perceive that story.

Look at what Sour Patch Kids did as a Snapchat campaign:

Photo by the Shorty Awards

Instagram or Snapchat Stories?

Yes, Snapchat did create stories before Instagram, but Instagram is way ahead. Instagram users, more often than not, have more followers than they do on Snapchat. This creates a bigger and a wider audience for Instagram (set aside the fact that Instagram's audience base is already greater than Snapchat's). Also, although Snapchat stories are a great way to tell a story, Instagram has more marketing opportunities than Snapchat, so that's a win for Instagram.

Although Instagram 'stole' the idea from Snapchat, they stole the idea in the right way. I like to think of this the same way Joey Tribbiani (@Matt LeBlanc) from Friends did, "If you're going to do something wrong, do it right."

So, What is a Good, Cohesive Story?

I'm not the one to talk, I've made one Snapchat story representing a day in my life, and as it turns out, putting a story together is hard. You're probably thinking, "Please, how hard can this be? You just share everything you do during the day." Yeah, okay. I want to see you do that flawlessly.

I wouldn't call my Snapchat story that good and cohesive, but the story was my best (and only) one. Here are my tips:

Focus on one Theme

Don't post random bits and pieces throughout your story, keep your snaps consistent. Put yourself in the viewer's shoes and think about what they would like to follow up on. For example, don't say something like: "stay tuned for more information on how to style a bandana" and then have your next post be a picture of a friend eating ice-cream. Seriously.

Don't Repeat a Snap a Million Times

Okay, I spent 15 minutes taking a 10-second video because I didn't like the way my hair kept falling in my face from the wind. Don't do that, because you'll look like you're trying too hard after a while. Just let it be. You never know, your snap might turn out to be funny in a good, attention-grabbing way.

Make Your Story Compelling

Don't you hate it when you want to view a snap story again, but it's gone? That's the result you want to obtain from viewers. Make them want to view your story over and over again. Keep your snaps interesting, unique, and unusual. From my experience, people like to see things they don't already know (even if they are not interested in your idea, your story may still be new to their eyes).

Live in the Moment

Whatever happens, while taking a Snapchat, happens. This is somewhat out of your control. You do not have to perfect every image, video, and text. This platform is not Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter, public engagement is not that engaging on Snapchat, everything is, to some extent, personal. Just live in the moment, and again, let it be.

Take a look at my Snapchat story about a day in the life of, well, me:

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