Snapchat: How to Create Custom Geofilters

Snapchat has recently made custom geofilters available, allowing businesses to add a little something extra to their marketing and make the most of this incredibly popular platform. There are endless possibilities with what you can create - but how can you design your own? Let's take a look.

Unlike a dog licking the screen or face swapping with strangers, a geofilter can only be accessed in specific locations. This can be an incredibly effective strategy for local businesses looking to target people in the area, or to celebrate a special event. If you've used the discover section of Snapchat you've likely seen these everywhere. Now it's time to make our own! Here's a few things to take into account.

1. Think of something creative.

Marketing is all about adding value, whilst gaining and holding attention. Therefore, make sure your geofilter is worth looking at! Just like anything else in life or business, boring things won't stick. Sounds simple, but still people get it wrong. Come up with something creative - champagne and party poppers for someone's birthday party - fireworks celebrating a current event - tomatoes all over the screen for a cooking class. These are just some seriously basic examples, just make sure whatever you do is interesting! 

2. Pick the right place.

Snapchat suggest places where people are likely to send snaps - public places, specific venues, landmarks, event locations etc. It's important to make it local and for something relevant - you won't benefit much from making it the entire State, but you're also unlikely to get a geofilter for your bedroom approved. 

3. Choose between Community or On-Demand

There are two different options. With Community, Artists and designers are encouraged to create and submit a free Community Geofilter for their city, university, a local landmark, or another public location. No brand logos allowed. On demand allow business and individuals alike to purchase geofilters for their event, business, or a specific location. Brand logos and trade-marks are permitted.

Oh - and don't make it spammy. This should be obvious after the first point, because spam is neither creative or interesting. Although on top of that, Snapchat will likely not approve obvious promotion, brand logos and over the top sales pitches. They're not silly - they know what you're trying to do.

To view their submission guidelines, take a look here.

4. Draw it! Make sure your design fits the parameters.

Time to make your own filter! A filter should be subtle enough to enhance the photo, not ruin or interrupt it. Keep it simple, transparent, and usable for both night and day.

Files should be 1080px wide by 1920px high. You can download Illustrator and Photoshop templates direct from their website here. Use the purchase tool preview page to see how it will look on different devices.


5. Confirm the location, write a good description and submit that baby!

Draw the location of your geofilter, write a description and then send it away to Snapchat.  Before it gets approved you'll have to wait for Snapchat to respond (they do this within 1 business day). If your geofilter is rejected by Snapchat don't panic - They'll provide you a reason as to why. If this does happen you can make adjustments and resubmit your filter as a new order. Adjustments can be minor, you may just need to tweak the colours, the text or anything else that isn't making it work. Play around and see if you can enhance it, it's a good idea to look at popular (and approved) filters to see what they are doing right.

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There you have it! If you want to get your own custom geofilter you can have it designed and live in a matter of days. It's worth noting that every business should be using or at least considering Snapchat as a part of their marketing strategy - it's a great platform! Happy Snapping!

Twitter @mitchills