Treat Snapchat Like A TV Channel

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String Nguyen

LinkedIn's First B2B Video Channel | Top Voice 2017 | Nominated for 30u30 Forbes Asia

Latest posts by String Nguyen (see all)

In the last six months, I’ve taken my snap game to another level by treating Snapchat like a TV channel. Like many others, I’ve used Snapchat to maintain connections with friends, but my digital savvy side realised that it’s a tool for business and personal branding. The way I see it, Snapchat is an interactive TV in your pocket.

Here’s a line graph showing my growth in the first 7 weeks of setting up my channel. As my channel focuses on being interactive with the audience, I want to point out the line of “screenshots”. By week six, I had over 1000 screenshots. Once I realised the potential of Snapchat did I seriously begin to program two weekly shows called #SnapchatMonday and #TechTuesday. I only manually measured these episodes as they showcase high impact “substance” content.

This post plans to discuss how I’ve been growing my channel using Snapchat as a tool. There are three aspects that are utilised to: develop content, maintain communication and create connections.

Snapchat For (Micro) Content

10 seconds is enough to convey your thoughts. When you string your snaps together, it creates a story.

A good storyteller needs to be interesting to hold an attention of many and provide continual value. There’s two types of value — candy and substance. Candy content like ArsenicTV entertains you and the latter, Substance content, provides food for thought.

I teach on Snapchat and share information by utilising the existing tools within the platform.

One time, a growth hacker was on my new #TakeoverThursday show (a curated list of interesting personalities take over my snapchat account), and he delivered 15mins of growth hacking tips. The retention of view went down and I had to go in and cull it down to the best 5 minutes.

Snapchat is a different media platform, you can easily do long ones, but I think that form of content is better suited to YouTube. Attention span is short on Snapchat.

The ideal sweet spot is between 1:30 to 3:30. I’ve done a 5 minute snap episode and managed to retain good viewership.

Stay on point and show up. 

The secret is building up a channel is relevant and reliable consistency. People who follow me know that I will come on Monday to snap about Snapchat and geek out on tech on Tuesday.(Schedule Timetable)

Snapchat is great as it’s easy to project and articulate your ideas, stories and thoughts to the world.

Snapchat For Communication

Snapchat 2.0 has become a place for maintaining real time conversation to connect and grow your contacts.

By having an open chat policy, I often received messages from people who have been following me from different channels, but they specifically come to chat to me on Snapchat.

Just like on Top Gear, they had a ladder for fastest guest drivers. I created a ladder for Snapchatters who uses the most battery. Less than 50 people contributed by sending me their screenshots of their battery usage. Snapchat kills your battery!

A pro and downside on having real time communication is having people from around the world talking to me. There’s a constant urge to respond to messages in a timely manner. This post is a timely reminder to create a habit of switching off my phone to airplane mode and sleep.

Interestingly, I receive inappropriate messages of fruit salad, sometimes randoms send me their eggplants (an emoji connotation for penis).

Besides that, Snapchat is great to maintain contacts and build your community around you and your content.

Snapchat As A Connection

Your vibe attracts your tribe.

Being that it’s such a new medium for branding, reaching out to influencers is easier as it’s not that saturated yet.

In many ways, Snapchat is a closed social media network. It may be harder to discover and follow, but when they find you, they likely to keep being engaged with you. Retention is higher on the other social media platforms I’ve seen so far.

There’s no downside, only upside in building genuine relations. Every person who has jumped on #TakeoverThursday are awesome people within their fields and expertise. Tien Wong and I constantly chat on Snapchat about business and he even gave me a mention on the Washington Business Insider. How awesome is that?!

Tien Wong, an angel investor based in Washington DC, once said to me on Snapchat “…customers, opportunities, recruits, they’re all emanate from relationships”

Snapchat is great that it can be used to build your network anywhere in the world.

Takeaway Points

Snapchat is a great tool for personal branding, as it’s:

– Low key and super accessible, people will stick by you if they genuinely like you.

– Show up and share your day or thoughts.

– Use the messaging feature to maintain and make new connections.

– Have fun, viewers will spot lack of authenticity. One can’t hide from the camera.

It’s still a relatively new format and being in the early stages, I have the opportunity to experiment worn format and this is the time to leverage the platform as good content makers and interesting personalities will stand out.

My current growth goals for the channel: 

1. To gain 1000 true raving fans, as I rather have an engaged network of influencers, content makers and innovators connecting with me.

2. To use the channel to help grow my brand as a tech and social communicator ala I want to be (in)famously known as a geek from the future, who loves fried chicken.

This post was originally posted and updated to suit from Suzanne’s medium post.

How to follow me on Snapchat:

  1. Take a picture with your phone of the Snapcode (the QR yellow code on the right)
  2. Open the Snapchat app
  3. Tap the ghost icon on top, and go to “Add Friends”
  4. Tap “Add by Snapcode”
  5. Bonus round: Message me and say “Show me a magic trick”


Suzanne has also created a Snapchat Marketing Accelerator, check the full course outline here

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String Nguyen

LinkedIn's First B2B Video Channel | Top Voice 2017 | Nominated for 30u30 Forbes Asia

Treat Snapchat Like A TV …

by String Nguyen time to read: 4 min