Digital Storytelling in a ‘Snap’

Digital Storytelling in a ‘Snap’

“Stories are the way humans make sense of the world”

– Cameron Uganec, Director of Marketing at HootSuite

As a marketer it should be common knowledge by now that consumers gravitate towards brands that offer authentic, storytelling experiences rather than those simply spouting off product benefits.

And of course, the major catalyst in the growth of branded storytelling is the rise of social media, since storytelling in itself has always been a socially driven activity.

Most often, companies will play out there branded stories on common social media channels such as Facebook, Twitter or even Instagram; however more and more marketers are turning to Snapchat to produce daily stories that engage and excite audiences.

Here are a couple of reasons why:

The most exciting tool that Snapchat offers is its “Stories” feature, which is simply a series of snaps that are strung together to create a story (hence the title) available to view for up to 24 hours. The expiration of these messages gives brands the opportunity to tell a new and engaging story each day, whereas TV commercials often become a part of the background noise to most consumers.

Yo Quiero Snapchat

Taco Bell was one of the first brands to use Snapchat as a means to connect with an increasingly digitized, millennial consumer.

In fact, the brand’s first snap on the platform was used to announce the return of the popular Beefy Crunch Burrito


Since then, Taco Bell has become a front-runner when it comes to using the ghost-faced social platform to connect with consumers by using creative and innovative storytelling approaches.

Ever seen a movie, 10 seconds at a time? Taco Bell made a bold move when it chose to announce the flavor of the new Doritos Locos Taco through a branded short film shot entirely on Snapchat.

The short film was the first of its kind and resulted in over 70,000 users adding the brand on Snapchat in a single day, making it the most followed brand on the platform. The campaign also went on to win a social media Webby Award for “Best Use of Video.”

‘Snap’ to it

While most companies do not have the ingenuity or resources to take on such a feat, the main point is that Snapchat is an excellent platform to tell your brand story in an innovative way, while at the same time increasing community engagement.

However, it all starts with baby steps. Here are some quick ways to start incorporating branded storytelling through Snapchat:

Provide Access to Exclusive Events

If your company is a part of a popular yet exclusive event, get your audience excited by making them feel a part of the event by showcasing the occasion through Snapchat. The NBA did exactly that during the 2014 NBA Finals.


Show How Your Product Comes to Life

Snapchat is a great tool to showcase how your product is made from start to finish. This type of sneak peak really allows audiences to appreciate the work that goes into making a quality product. While this video is sourced from Instagram, New Belgium Brewery’s streak plate video shows consumers the science involved in the creation of their favorite beer and would make an excellent snap.

Make the Message Meaningful

The old adage goes that a picture says a thousand words. So make those words meaningful and establish an emotional connection with your Snaps. The World Wildlife Federation did exactly that with their #LastSelfie Snapchat campaign

In the ever-evolving world of social media, you never know when the next game-changing platform will take hold, so ‘Snap’ to it and start telling your brand story!


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