As a millennial, I use Snapchat on a regularly — OK, hourly — basis (if I’m not sleeping). It’s a tool that allows me to keep in touch with my friends. Not in the “here are all the great things I’m doing” (cough cough) Facebook way, but in the “I just ran into a glass door, here’s my welt” way. I drop my social media guard and send snaps to my friends, no matter how great or bad I look. Like many Snapchat users, I feel like the more real the snap, the better.

It’s Snapchat’s gritty, in-the-moment appeal that’s taken my generation by storm. And if you want your business to reach us, you might think Snapchat is a great way to do it.

Maybe not. Here’s why:

It’s tough to target potential customers. You have to find users through your contacts or by knowing their exact Snapchat handle (username).

It’s populated by a younger crowd. Data shows that 71 percent of users are younger than 34, with 45 percent between the ages of 18 and 24. If your business caters to this demographic and you can come up with a creative way to appeal to them via Snapchat, awesome. Most small businesses won’t find it worth the time, however.

It works best for lifestyle or personal brands. That’s just the nature of Snapchat.

My recommendation? Focus on the social media platforms where more of your target customers spend their time. But if you’re still curious about Snapchat, here are some tips.

Be playful with your Snap stories

You want your snaps to stand out in the crowd. Make sure that they are funny,relevant and a have a flash of flare. You can use the face-centric filters in unique ways to amplify your brand. Throw a puppy face filter on yourself or one of your staff members. You can draw on snaps, too — feel free to write messages to your followers and draw pictures to spice them up.

Interact with your followers

Brands often make a huge mistake with social media: they use it as a broadcasting tool instead of an interaction tool. It’s all about engagement.  Take the time to respond to followers’ snaps. Hold behind-the-scenes events for your biz that help answer people’s questions. You can even host “secret” promotions by rewarding followers who respond to special codes you share in your snaps.

Add to community stories

Snapchat has a “my story” function that broadcasts snaps to your entire following. It also has a feature where you can add to community stories. You can see these as “My Campus Story” or more event-centric stories like the Grammys. Adding content to these stories can help you reach a broader audience.

Feel like small businesses should be on Snapchat? Feel free to tweet me.

About the Author:

Jillian Johnson is a social media specialist at GoDaddy. She’s committed to contributing bold and innovative ideas for sharing brand and personal narratives online, and believes that a carefully crafted digital identity can be a game-changer for both businesses and individuals. In Jillian’s world, there’s a GIF for every emotion and a dance battle is the best way to settle a conflict. In her spare time, she is exploring Seattle, one local spot at a time.

Should your small business use Snapchat?