Most people use Snapchat for the basics: taking pictures of their food to make friends envious, videoing intoxicated family members, or maybe just to keep a conversation with friends via double-chin selfies sent back and forth. However, now that magazines, brands, and celebrities have taken over the app, more eyes are on Snapchat now more than ever.
But how does a brand, person, or cause stand out in a sea of 10 second messages which then disappear into an abyss? Ask Ed Sheeran. This ginger English man has been dominating the music scene with his acoustically textured ballads since 2011. After taking a break from the music scene for the past two years, Sheeran needed to come out with a bang in order to announce his return. In order to get his fans hyped up about his long awaited fourth album, Sheeran sneakily used Snapchat’s features to his advantage. If you’re a Snapchat regular, you’d know that brands can use filters to promote themselves, their locations, etc. Ed Sheeran used this tactic to debut his new song, “Shape of You.” A subtle promotional strategy, users didn’t realize the filter was the new song until the filter was chosen, the song began to play, and blue shades were placed on their face and lights flashed in the background. This move by Sheeran’s team not only was advantageous to them and the release of the album, but this move could encourage more creative ways of promoting music and media via social platforms.
Maybe this will persuade other celebrities and brands to discreetly use social media platforms to their advantage rather than making a big scene for their marketing goal. Sheeran’s approached this promotional plan creatively and let the small maneuver speak for itself (and the extremely catchy song).