fbpx

SnapChat: A Cyberbully’s BFF + Tips for Use in Business

With close to a million apps available for download, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed by all the options out there. I’m constantly checking out new apps to help with productivity, file storing/sharing, social media monitoring and I even have a few fun apps for when I need a mental break. Recently, I’d been hearing about a new(er) app that allows users to quickly snap and share photos, which then disappear in a mater of seconds. My first thought? Wow. That seems like a potential resource for online predators or fuel for cyberbullying. I was especially struck by this possibility after

KateFinley.com SnapChat

KateFinley.com SnapChat

With close to a million apps available for download, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed by all the options out there. I’m constantly checking out new apps to help with productivity, file storing/sharing, social media monitoring and I even have a few fun apps for when I need a mental break.

Recently, I’d been hearing about a new(er) app that allows users to quickly snap and share photos, which then disappear in a mater of seconds. My first thought? Wow. That seems like a potential resource for online predators or fuel for cyberbullying. I was especially struck by this possibility after listening to a piece by NPR, on the disturbing reality of online shaming. After downloading the app and researching it, sadly, it looks like my reservations were right. Meet a cyberbully’s new BFF: SnapChat.

SnapChat allows you to snap a photo via your smartphone, add text, draw on the photo and then send it to your contacts. The unique aspect of this app is that you set a timer for viewing (up to 10-seconds) and once you view the photo you only have a have seconds before it’s deleted from the sender and receiver’s phone.

Although a growing number of adults are using SnapChat as a sexting tool, the majority of users are 13-25 years old. According to the NYTimes, users are sharing over 60 million photos and messages via SnapChat on a daily basis and many teens are forgoing Facebook for social tools like SnapChat. Considering many parents still aren’t familiar with the app, it can allow for more privacy than Facebook.

Obviously there are some negative uses for this app. Still, there are many who use the app to share funny photos and avoid having to use storage space on their phones. Let’s look into more specifics as well as some applications for business ….

Download SnapChat

SnapChat is available for iPhone and Android. It can be downloaded via iTunes or Google Play and setup is very simple. Once you’ve added the app to your smartphone, you can see which of your current contacts is using SnapChat and invite them to connect.

KateFinley.com SnapChat Screenshot

Recommended Uses

As outlined in the app’s Privacy Policy, the SnapChat is intended for fun and other than avoiding racist comments and a few other warnings, you just get snapping.

Privacy?

Although SnapChat “technically” deletes photos automatically after your preset time limit, it is possible for others to take a screenshot of the photo you sent them or snap an image/video with another device. In the words of SnapChat’s privacy policy:

KateFinley.com SnapChat Privacy Policy

 

Remember, what happens online, stays online and so you may want to rethink before you snap and send.

Uses for Business

Other than experimenting with and just being aware of this increasingly popular tool, here are some ideas for using SnapChat for business:

  • Coupon promotions: Because you can set the view settings for up to 10-seconds (max), this is a way to potentially have more control when offering promotions because forwarding to a friend isn’t really an option. It’s not impossible to share the promotion with someone else, as outlined above, but it another hoop to jump through and therefor less likely.
  • Experiential Events: Think scavenger hunt with clues that can be accessed once you send a photo to a specified contact. Or an ‘Enter to Win’ by sending a photo of your participation at an event.
  • Confidential Sharing: You can easily send quick updates on projects or documents. Think a quick group shot at a meeting or progress reporting.

Now it’s your turn: What potential uses do you see for SnapChat in business? Do you agree with the concerns listed above?

And, if you’re a parent, get on SnapChat and look to see if your kids are using the app. If they are, connect with them and start engaging within the app or decide whether you want them using SnapChat at all.

Kate Finley

Founder + CEO of Belle
Currently thriving in Puerto Rico