Snapchat: Promote your Brand

Let’s face it, not every brand is deemed as interesting, exciting, or even relatable in today’s society. This is especially true for company’s that want to reach a younger audience, but don’t know how to. Working for an electric cooperative, Basin Electric, it can be hard to make electricity a hot topic for anyone under 50. One way we’ve been combating this and making them aware of our brand is through Snapchat.

With the fourth of July parade bringing thousands of people to Mandan, we found this as the perfect opportunity to reach a younger audience while showing our involvement in the community with a Snapchat filter. We didn’t want the focus of the filter to be our brand, Touchstone Energy Cooperatives, but instead wanted to encourage users to promote the festivities at the parade.

How do filters work?

As people take Snapchats, they can swipe right on their phone and it will lead them to a variety of geo-filters that are made specifically for the location that they are in. When you upload your artwork to Snapchat, you will select the geographical location that you want the filter to run in, and the cost of the filter will be based off of the square footage and the length of time you want it to run.

In the case of the parade, this is what the artwork I created looked like that would be overlayed on all of the snaps in the downtown area.

Touchstone-Fourth-of-July-Filter

Once users swipe and add the filter, this is what it looks like when they send it to their friends.

Man uses his Mobile Phone outdoor

How successful are they?

I think the success of the filter is based off of how fun and relatable it is to users, along with the location of it. It’s going to be hard to get a significant amount of uses if you don’t have a filter that people want to share with their friends.

This filter was our most successful one with 1,500 swipes (people who swiped and saw the filter), 432 people using the filter, and 15,700 total views over the course of 4 hours. Total views are calculated based off of people who personally received the Snapchat or saw it on other users stories.

Tips for successful filters:

  1.  Follow their rules and guidelines so that your filter gets approved.
  2. Submit it early. They limit the amount of filters that can run in a certain location at once, so submitting early ensures that you have a spot.
  3. Keep it simple. Less information is more when it comes to Snapchat. Remember that users have up to 10 seconds to read these, and people frequently send a message along with the filter that needs to be read during this time.
  4. Make it compelling. Whether it’s funny, pretty, bold, or weird, make a filter that users will want to share with their friends.
  5. Make sure it works on all backgrounds. While most filters will look great on the plain white background you submit it on, they need to be readable on all photos. Test it by overlaying it on a multitude of photos, backgrounds and colors.
  6. Test it. For only $5 you can run a test-run of the filter to make sure it works perfect.
  7. Promote it. This is especially true for smaller events. By spreading it through word of mouth, with signage, social media, or simply by using it and sending it out during the event, you will get more usage.

Interview: Do’s and Don’ts

With graduation nearing, BSC Graphic Design & Communications Club members will soon be applying for jobs in the community.

Nicole Perreault, Graphics Supervisor at Basin Electric [a.k.a. my boss], recently talked to the club on this subject, sharing her “do’s and don’ts” of interviews, seen below.

CLEAN UP YOUR FACEBOOK/SOCIAL MEDIA

Employer’s don’t want to see photo’s of you doing a keg stand or playing beer pong; no matter if the photo was from this weekend, or 5 years ago – delete it. Your potential employer wants someone professional, reliable and responsible both at work and at home, so leave a good impression on all accounts.

RESEARCH THE COMPANY BEFORE THE INTERVIEW

You don’t need to know all of the company’s history and analytics, but know the basis of what they do and what they are reputable for. Researching the company shows that you are truly interested in not only the job opening, but also in their company as a whole.

DON’T BE INTIMIDATED BY OTHERS APPLYING

Great jobs bring in great applicants, including you. Don’t be intimidated if your peers are applying for the same job, use it as motivation to try your hardest, stand out from the crowd and get the position.

UTILIZE OTHERS

Show friends, family, peers or professors your resume, cover letter and portfolio. This is the interviewer’s first impression of you, so have others review it beforehand so that first impression can be a great one.

PORTFOLIO: QUALITY VS. QUANTITY

Don’t settle for mediocre when you are choosing pieces for your portfolio. Employers would rather see 8 great pieces then 12 pieces where 8 of them are fantastic, and the other 4 fall short. Sharing weaker projects not only showcase your weaknesses and imperfections, but also make the employer question your abilities as a whole.

MAKE YOUR PORTFOLIO STAND OUT

Dare to be different. Include a variety of projects that fit to what the employer is looking for, and more. Digital portfolios are a great way to gain a web presence while having something the employer can come back to look at later on.

PRACTICE INTERVIEW QUESTIONS

Think ahead on common interview questions and practice how you will answer them. You don’t need to have a script, but being prepared for tough questions can ease nerves and smooth the interview along. Along with this, expect to have some questions thrown at you that you won’t expect. It’s okay to breathe, think, and even ask for a moment to ponder their question so that you can answer it in a way that best represents you.

DRESS PROFESSIONAL

This seems like an obvious one, but it is something people frequently miss. While your attire will vary based off of the prospective company’s atmosphere, it is a rule of thumb that it is better to over-dress then under-dress.

BE EARLY

Don’t come an hour early as it will put pressure on the employer, but arrive 15 minutes early to gather your thoughts, prepare and to avoid being rushed.

WHILE YOU ARE WAITING…

Arriving early means that you have time to kill before the interview. Instead of scrolling through your phone, decide on one or two things you want to be remembered by. By making a note of what you want the employer to leave the interviewer realizing, you can focus on this and make it something that you tie into your interview. Along with this, make sure to stay calm, breathe, focus on your posture, stop rehearsing how you think the interview will go, and overall just think happy thoughts.

REMEMBER BODY LANGUAGE

When meeting with the interviewer, make sure to use eye contact, smile, nod to show interest, and actively listen. This will not only show that you are interested in what they are saying and make you more relatable, but will allow you to better understand what is being discussed so that you can find an appropriate response.

BE CONFIDENT

Confidence is killer when it comes to interviews. Employer’s want confident candidates to represent their company; when showing your work, sit tall and be proud of what you have accomplished, and elaborate on how you did it.

NOTES

Bring a pen and any notes that you had already taken. During the interview, write down key things you want to remember, or questions that may pop up. This will reinforce your active listening skills and will help so that you don’t forget any key information.

HAVE QUESTIONS TO ASK

Asking questions is a great way to show employer’s your interest in not only the job opening, but also the company as a whole.

Some questions you may ask are:

  • What have you enjoyed most about working here?
  • Do you have any hesitations about my qualifications?
  • Do you offer continued education and professional training?
  • Can you tell me about the team I’ll be working with?
  • What qualities did you like in the person who previously held this position?
  • How do you measure success for this position?
  • Do you have a business card? (provides you with their contact info)

THANK YOU CARD or EMAIL

Following up with a thank you will remind the employer of who you are and also shows your interest in the position.

FOLLOW UP

Employer’s are busy. Hiring processes can take time and patience; by calling to follow up on the status of the position, you can reinforce your interest in the job and discover what point they are at in the hiring process.

KEEP APPLYING

You won’t get every job you apply for, but that doesn’t mean you should give up. Each interview and application process is practice; the more you do, the better the interview candidate you will become. Learn from the mistakes you made, call the employer for feedback on where you fell short, and look at the current candidate to see what aspects they excelled in and how you can improve so that you are the first choice in the next job opening.