Snapchat is definitely my favourite social network right now.

I love it because it’s real, authentic stories are way better than the highly-emotional ones (that’s a generous term for them) from Facebook or the “perfect” ones on Instagram.

You simply don’t see people spending 20-30 minutes perfecting their photo or video on Snapchat.

And that’s why it’s awesome.

Snapchat is the fast and furious of the social media networks, but in the midst of the chaos, people are telling some fantastic, funny stories.

And you are gaining an inside-perspective of people’s real lives that doesn’t happen elsewhere.

So if you’re ready to jump into Snapchat or you’ve just started dabbling, I’m going to talk about how to grow your influence.

How to grow your influence on Snapchat

I’ve had a bunch of people asking for themselves or their clients how to engage and grow their following on Snapchat.

These tips are for people that want to connect with an audience and grow their influence.

While these tips aren’t specific for a “business” persona, many of them do apply.

1. Be a user first – AKA learn how to use Snapchat properly

It seems like a basic principle, but so many people are trying to leverage social media without understanding the network first. You always make bad decisions when you forget that you need to give more than you take on social.

People see right through that.

Until you understand what a user values on a social media platform, you will never create content that people love.

So you need to first start using Snapchat as a user. Get to know the ins and outs and watch what other people are doing.

If you don’t know how to use Snapchat, here’s a 10-minute tutorial I created to get you started – because, honestly, it’s the most-confusing social media platform I’ve ever seen to get started on.

2. Follow, follow-back

After you join, you’re going to start to see people following you because you’re in their address book (you should also add everyone in your address book to get going – you’ll be amazed how many people are already on Snapchat).

Follow everyone back that follows you.

You don’t have to do this for forever, but when you’re starting out, you need to see what other people are doing on Snapchat to understand the platform and give you space to interact with them.

People appreciate being followed and when you follow them, you get access to watch their public stories. This is invaluable real-world data on how people Snap and will give you great ideas.

3. Say “hi” to everyone

Every time someone follows me, I follow them back then send them a private Snap saying hi and thanking them for following me.

I look at their username and picture to try and figure out a little bit about them or at least have a laugh at butchering their name.

Anything to make it personal.

When you swipe left-to-right, you get to your private chat screen. On here, you’ll see names in grey of people that you’ve just added as friends.

Send these people an individual snap and say hi.

4. Watch, listen, interact

People love it when they know you’re listening.

As much as I can, I’m watching people’s public Snap Stories and you can swipe up to send a quick chat regarding a story.

Watch their stories and at any point that you can, send them a one-liner on their story to give them some feedback and let them know you’re listening.

5. You be you – as long as that’s not being quiet

I say this point last because people want to go first to pushing out content – it should be last.

But you do need to be creating content on Snapchat.

People will always say, “My life’s just not that interesting”. Frankly, that’s a giant pile of horse manure and the worst excuse.

Make it interesting.

That’s the whole point of good content – it’s not easy.

But it’s also social – meaning about people being people.

So whatever you find interesting, don’t give a crap whether other people think it’s interesting.

Be you.

But do take a couple minutes to think about the best way to frame it – whether that be lining it up for a nice photo or taking 30 seconds to think about how you can make it a little bit funny or entertaining.

Don’t just mail it in.

Wrap-up

If you start doing this, you’re going to notice that people are engaging with you and the number of people viewing your Snaps will continue to grow and increase.

Questions? Drop a comment below!

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