How to Create Custom Snapchat Geofilters


Less than a month ago, Snapchat opened custom on-demand geofilters, which allows anyone to pay to deliver a custom image filter in a specific area for a set amount of time within the application.

If you haven’t heard of geofilters, they are location-based overlays that Snapchat users can apply to the Snaps they send to their friends. If you haven’t heard of Snapchat, now is the perfect time to crawl out from under the rock you’ve been living under for the last three years. This social network has over 100 million daily active users that view roughly 8 billion user generated videos through an ephemeral photo/video sharing app per day. So, pay attention.

With the launch of custom Snapchat geofilters comes the ability for you to connect not only with the people using the app in a particular location, but also the people to whom the snaps are sent.

It’s the next big thing in marketing whether you like it or not and it’s not going away anytime soon. So, congratulations if you’re reading this blog. You’re way ahead of the game. The people who jump on this trend in the next twelve months will get a disproportionate amount of opportunity to get the attention of their target audience before the competition does.

So, without further ado, here’s how create your first Snapchat geofilter:

Step 1: Develop the Concept

If you’re thinking of just using your logo or a current promotion for your geofilter, keep thinking. You need to come up with something that adds value to people’s snaps and doesn’t just promote your brand. Develop something that encourages them to share it with their friends.

It helps to ask yourself what you think people are going to be snapping when they come across your filter. Is it hyper relevant to an event or location? Will it add something to the situation? Your number one goal here is to really provide value upfront, not just ask for the sale.

Step 2: Create the Design

If you’re not a graphic designer or well versed in Photoshop, it would be a good idea to have someone who is for this part of the process. However, Snapchat does have a few templates available and ready for you if you if you want to take a stab at it. You can download them on the first page of the submission process.

If you’re making your own, a few things to keep in mind:

Files should be

  • 1080px wide by 1920px high
  • Under 300KB in size
  • Saved as a .PNG file with a transparent background

Also, make sure to test your filter before uploading on top of many different kinds of photos with different lighting and settings. You’ll want to make sure the filter still looks good in every situation. And, don’t take up more than ⅓ of the screen unless you think your concept is super compelling. You don’t want to cover people’s photos and it might get rejected by Snapchat anyway.

Step 3: Upload the Filter and Set the Timeframe

This is the easy part but you have to take a few things into consideration when you’re ready to upload.

  • Give yourself at least two business days to get approval from Snapchat. The tool will let you submit your content until one day before, but it’s always smart to plan ahead for possible rejected designs. You’ll have to resubmit if it doesn’t pass the test, so it could take an extra day to go through the process again.
  • You can’t include URLs, handles or email addresses in your filter, so if you’re trying to create a filter as a call to action to get more followers, you’ll need to be more creative. Filters that say “Follow me @____” or “Go to” will be rejected.
  • Campaigns can’t last for more than 30 days at a time.

Next, you’ll select the timeframe you want your filter to run. Be aware that all the times are eastern standard time for some reason. So, if you are trying to schedule a filter for somewhere on the west coast, you need to think about it in eastern time. So, just take it slow at first and double check your work. Once your filter is submitted, you can’t edit the time.

Step 4: Set Your Target Area

Once you submit the design and time of placement, you’ll then be asked to put in the address or location you want to target, and draw a fence around it using the tool. The fence can be any shape really, just make sure it connects and is less than 5 million square feet. That’s the max amount of space you can cover at any given moment.

Step 5: Pay for it.

For $5 per 20k square feet, per hour, your business could potentially reach 60% of all 13 to 34 year olds in a specified location as well as the people to which the snaps are sent. Crazy. Right? The possibilities for these things are endless.

Anyway, on the final screen, all you have to do is name your filter, double check the times you’ve selected and choose whether this filter is for personal or business use. If you reference a business whatsoever, make sure to choose business and make your logo easily visible.

Now that you’re a Snapchat pro, follow me! If you’re on your phone reading this, just click here. If you still don’t want to get into snapchat after reading this but see the value it has for marketing your business or organization, get in touch with us. We’d love to help you out with it.



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