Snapchat is new enough that many are still figuring out how to be a "Snapchat pro." It's the latest app that has grown quickly, with travel bloggers being some of the first to adapt to it.
No longer is it for sending stupid and unattractive faces to your friends or nudes. (You know the people who run the app see those, right?). It's now about showing the world how you live. And for travel bloggers, that's a big deal. And an even bigger deal for those who like to follow travel bloggers.
Passing are the days when we have to condense our thoughts into a 140-character limit on Twitter or edit only our best pictures to get the most "likes" on Instagram. Snapchat has taken over the game and is delivering multiple travel channels to your pocket with virtually unlimited content.
If you want to see the most real side of travel, get to know your favorite bloggers or travel the world without leaving your bed, then you need to be on Snapchat and following all of these people and more.
Or if you're a travel blogger looking for the next big thing, then you've found it. Show everyone your adventures, connect with your audience, and show everyone what the rest of the world and you are really like.
Snapchat is where your personality shines. It's where you make new friends; it's where you find some of the best stories. And if you think Snapchat is just for the big guys, you're wrong. You can use Snapchat as a way to show your friends the amazing life you have and share your amazing experiences.
To give you a head start with your Snapchat game, follow these tips on how to become a Snapchat pro. Let these top travel bloggers show you their world and how to do Snapchat right.
I believe the key to Snapchat for travel bloggers is to look at it like your own mini travel series, which you broadcast every day. You need to give people an insight into your life.
While it is important to show them as many interesting places as possible, you must also tell them about these places. They are watching to see YOU, not just the place.
I try to totally relax, and if I need to cry or laugh due to a difficult travel situation, I just do it and share with my followers.
People love to know you're human and relate better to you. They also need to see who you are, so don't shy away from the camera! JOURNALISTONTHERUN.COM
My top Snapchat tip is to create themed content for certain days of the week to give viewers waiting to hear more. A similar method is used by YouTubers, who publish on regular days to their channel.
I offer a daily #SnapchatTravelTip every day, which I also encourage viewers to tweet if they find it useful. Other great Snapchatters have a Q&A every Monday, or their tip of the week every Thursday.
Slow down when taking videos. We want to see the amazing place you are; no one likes a video that makes him or her sick to the stomach to watch.
If you are taking a video, pan by slowly, and don't make too many movements. Shifting too quickly can cause the recording to get fuzzy and bumpy. Make sure the video is clear before posting.
Set the context daily. Where are you? What's going on today? WHO are you? As Snapchat grows and users start following dozens of accounts, they're going to need help remembering who is who.
Show your face, and give a (brief) outline of what to expect from your story today. If I don't know what I'm looking at, I'm more likely to start clicking through the Story -- and once I start speeding through, I don't usually slow down.
My advice to optimize your Snapchatting fun is to use the geofilters often! Using the geofilters is a great way to show people where you are in your travels without having to spell it out for them, literally!
To use the geofilters, first take an awesome photo! Then, swipe to the left, and you should see your first geofilter. Keep swiping until you see one you like; they're all usually super cool and uniquely designed for each location.
My tip for Snapchat might seem like a no-brainer, but it, unfortunately, isn't; remember to BE SOCIAL on Snapchat! It is social media after all.
It is such an easy platform to create relationships with because you've got a voice and a face, but so many people don't take advantage of responding to stories that resonate. Remember that Snapchat is not JUST for putting your content out there. You can connect with readers, fellow travelers, and friends!
Entertaining Snapchats are about telling a story, not just a random assortment of clips from your day, so think about your transitions between snaps. I like to talk about where I am or where I'm going, or post the view out the metro/bus/car/plane to show that we're moving to a new location.
Mix it up between pictures and videos, and remember that our attention spans are short. The reality is followers probably aren't going to sit and listen to you talk for three video sessions in a row. They will, however, listen to where you are and watch you scream as you run away from a lizard who took refuge in your room.
Followers will take a cheeky look at a sunset picture, but they will stay for that picture you took in the plane of the woman in front of you whose ponytail covers your movie screen. Draw pictures, be creative, and show travel in its raw form rather than the dream-like Instagram version we're used to.
Treat your Snapchat story like your own personal travel show. You can put your phone on airplane mode (or maybe it already is if you're traveling internationally), and then go back to edit your story later to make sure it's engaging and you don't have any unnecessary snaps. Also, since Snapchat is so personal (and that's what we love about it!), it's a great opportunity to show a side of yourself that readers wouldn't normally see.
When I was feeling lonely in Puerto Rico, instead of feeling like it wasn't "Snapworthy" to see me upset, I snapped about it, and I got a lot of people engaging with me, telling me about their own struggles while traveling.
Also, I believe you CAN grow your following and audience through Snapchat. It's all about engaging, as is the case on any other platform. You're able to reach out to "top" bloggers in a way you can't elsewhere on social media. I've made a lot of friends on Snapchat that otherwise wouldn't have any idea who I was or what my blog was about if I hadn't engaged with their stories.
Mix it up. Show your content in different ways to keep your audience entertained. You don't always want to be predictable. By having a good mix between videos and pictures, using emojis and different texts, your audience will be more engaged because they're seeing something different.
These bloggers all share a common theme through their tips: Don't be boring, create a mini travel series and keep people entertained.
If you're not inspired yet, then take a look at these bloggers' Snapchat stories, and you'll have plenty of inspiration and really be feeling some serious wanderlust.
Think you know how to be a Snapchat pro yet? Happy snapping!
This article was originally published on the author's personal blog.