Guide on how to create a Snapchat Geofilter for your business

Now you have thought about how you’d like to use a Geofilter, the next step is to create one! This post is the second in a two part series. Part one focuses on Snapchat Geofilter strategy and usage ideas and you can find it here.

Step 1: Designing a Snapchat Geofilter

There are a number of options for actually designing the Geofilter:

Manually design your own Geofilter

You can create your Geofilter design manually in a design tool such as Photoshop or Illustrator. There are templates to help you get started which you can access by going to this page and clicking the link called ‘templates’ here.

Use Snapchat’s customisable ready-made filters

If you don’t have access to design tools like Photoshop or Illustrator, you can use Snapchat’s own filter templates which can be customised with different colour schemes and wording. These templates can be very limiting so if it’s possible to create your own I would always go with that option instead. You can access this tool by going here and clicking ‘Design’ under the ‘Create Online’ section. Here’s an example:

Snapchat99

Use the Confetti App

Using an iPhone app called Confetti allows you to design filters for Snapchat by providing customisable elements for the filter including borders and predefined stickers / images. It’s a bit more customisable than Snapchat’s own ready-made filters because you can edit much more of the design with different sticker images as well as the colour scheme and fonts.

Like Snapchat’s own design interface it allows you to preview the filter you create against likely snap photos so you can see how it could look in action!

Here’s a filter I created for the Etch offices using this app:

etch filter

The app is free to download but it will cost $9.99 to save your design, and if you want them to submit it to Snapchat for you it can cost anything from £$14.99 depending on how long the filter will run for and how much Snapchat will charge for it.

If possible, I’d always recommend manually creating the filter yourself in Photoshop or Illustrator so that you can make it completely unique and reflect the look and feel of your brand or event.

Use Canva

Canva is a graphic design software with lots of built in customisable images / stickers, frames and other design elements. It’s an ideal place to start if you want more freedom than using a template or Confetti app but still need read-made elements to be part of the design. Canva doesn’t offer ready-made Snapchat size templates but you can create a custom size canvas and then design within it:

CANVA

What makes a good Snapchat Geofilter design?

  • Fun designs that are relevant to the location or event and that users will want to share with their friends
  • Ensure the filter only takes up the top, bottom or side of the screen and doesn’t take up too much of the central image so that the user can still nicely see their photo in the middle
  • Test out your Geofilter before you submit it by overlaying it on some pictures / snaps you have taken that could be examples of snaps your audience might use. This ensure you can make sure your filter fits nicely over most types of image
  • You can include logos and trademarks only if you have permission to use them
  • Do not include:
    • Contact information such as phone numbers, emails, social media handles (and hashtags)
    • Instructions to visit a URL or download anything
    • Photographs of people

Snapchat Geofilter file size and specifications:

  • Create a design that is 1080px wide by 1920px high
  • Save the file as a PNG with a transparent background
  • The maximum file size allowed is 300KB

Full submission guidelines can be found here.

Step2: Upload your Geofilter

If you’ve manually designed your filter you will go to this link and click upload under the ‘Use Your Own’ box. You then simply locate the file on your computer and select it to upload.

If you used the Confetti app and paid to save and download your filter you will need to send it to your computer (email is probably the easiest way to do this). You can then follow the step above and upload the file as if it has been created on your computer.

If you used Snapchat’s own design tools you will have already visited that link and once you’ve completed your design you simply click the yellow ‘Next’ button at the bottom left hand side of the screen to continue to the next step.

continue

Step 3: Choose the dates for your filter to run

Choose the dates you would like your filter to run for from the calendar:

IMAGE CALENDAR

If you’re running an event consider starting the filter a couple of days before so that people who arrive in the area early can start using it. The more exposure you can get for the filter before the event, the more likely people at the event already know the filter exists and use it on the day(s).

The maximum date range for an on-demand Geofilter is 30 days, and the shortest is one hour. Although you can’t run one filter for more than 30days, you could create the same filter again and submit it for the following 30 days.

Step 4: Choose the area in which you want the filter to be available

After choosing your dates, the next screen will allow you to draw a location on a map where the filter will be available.

The default location is in the US so simply use the search box to search for United Kingdom, or the particular town you want to target. You can then view this town on the map and draw your specific location. You can also search by postcode and then draw the specific location around the pinpoint of the postcode.

As location accuracy on mobile’s isn’t always reliable I would recommend making your location slightly larger than it actually needs to be to account for occasions when users phones aren’t reporting an accurate location. Snapchat advise you to draw a location which doesn’t use too many points or thin areas.

The area must be between 20 thousand and 5 million square feet.

In the top left hand corner of the screen you’ll see that the price for your filter changes based on the area you select. You can also adjust the dates in the top right hand corner to test how much different date range and location combinations will be.

CHOOSE LOCATION

Upon clicking the next button you’ll be taken to a payment page where you can confirm your order.

You can change the order whilst it’s under review but once it has been approved you would need to cancel and resubmit the order to make any changes.

Although you can set-up your filter and submit it and complete payment, it is not always guaranteed to run if Snapchat decide to sell the location to another advertiser or there is excessive demand. Their T&Cs state that this cost will be refunded if the ad does not run. Snapchat also won’t allow Geofilters to appear in the same place where Live Stories may be running. Keep this in mind when planning any other marketing activity which might rely on the filter.

If you are running multiple filters remember to name them descriptively so you can tell which one you are looking at when reviewing your results.

Step 5: Promote your Geofilter

Promote your filter on other platforms like through Facebook ads and promoted tweets which will show to users in the area and make them aware of it even if they aren’t actively about to take a snap and browsing filters. Although you can’t link to the filter you can talk about it in the ad copy of your ads.

You can also print-screen your snaps with the filter and share them on other social media channels to build awareness of the filter and get more people looking for it when they do use Snapchat.

Step 6: Review the performance of your Geofilter

Login to your account here and click your name in the top right-hand corner of the page, then ‘My Geofilters’. You can then select the filter and see how many Uses and Views your filter has had.

A use is when the filter has been applied to a snap and sent. A view is how many people saw a snap which used your filter.

This data can be one or two days behind so don’t panic if you don’t see any data straight away.

It is natural to have a much higher number of views than uses in most cases. This is particularly true if you can get influential Snapchatters to use your filter there is naturally a high opportunity to gather lots of views as they are likely to have lots of fans.

Hopefully this blog post has given you some handy ideas about how your business might use Geofilters and armed you with tips on how to get the best results from them. Are you already using Geofilters? What kind of success have you had? Share your experiences in the comments section below.

Read the connected post The Advertisers Guide to Snapchat Geofilters