Brand Awareness on a Budget

Snapchat is an image-based mobile messaging app. Users can send photos with captions, drawings, emojis, and a number of different filters over the picture to communicate with each other. What differentiates Snapchat from other social platforms is that after a few seconds, the image is deleted.

Who’s using Snapchat?

If you’ve dismissed Snapchat as just a fad or a novelty app used by kids, you’re not alone. I’ve had the same thoughts.  But the reality is that Snapchat enjoys a fairly broad and highly engaged audience of 13 - 37 year olds with 60% of users actively uploading snaps every single day.

In addition to a young and engaged audience, the platform is also growing quickly. Today over 173 million people use Snapchat globally and that number is expected to grow in the coming months. This presents a massive opportunity for any company looking to engage on a deeper level with a younger demo in a fun and interactive way. 

Taking Snapchat Advertising for a Spin

Like any good Digital Marketer, I decided to put my money where my mouth is and take Snapchat for business for a spin. With Equilibrium’s Melbourne Cup Party just a few weeks away, I got to work on diving into the exciting world of Snapchat advertising.

Snapchat advertising options 
Snapchat offers three paid advertisement options for advertisers. These include Snap Ads, Filters and Lenses. Let’s take a closer look at each of these options.

Snap Ads

Snap Ads 
Snap ads are full screen vertical video ads which can be customised based on your objectives. For example, Snap ads could be used to drive traffic straight to the pre-loaded website to collect leads or simply drive engagement and awareness around your brand. Ads can be purchased and optimised from within Snapchat’s Ads Manager.

On-Demand Geofilters

Snapchat On-Demand Geofilters 
A geofilter is a Snapchat filter that displays based on your specific location. Snapchat allows brands to purchase on-demand geofilters, which allows you to “own” a place or event for a specific period of time. Snapchat enables advertisers to upload their own custom designed filter online, select the amount of time it will run for and “geofence” the venue or radius they would like to cover.
Snapchat Lenses
Lenses are the are the most interactive - and fun - way to increase your brand’s awareness on a massive scale. With one tap, you can invite Snapchatters into your world — and your story.

Setting up our first Snapchat Geofilter

For our Melbourne Cup Day celebration I decided to create a Snapchat geofilter to encourage engagement from attendees, and as a secondary objective, boost awareness of the Equilibrium brand among passers-by. 

The process for creating an On-Demand Geofilter is super intuitive and includes 5 steps including:

STEP 1: Design your filter

The first in creating an on-demand geofilter is to design your filter. Snapchat offers the option to upload your own or build one online using editable templates. I highly recommend creating your own custom filter in-house if you have the design resources available. However, if this isn’t an an option then taking advantage of  Snapchat’s online templates can be a great way to get started quickly.


Snapchat has a comprehensive list of submission  guidelines for on-demand geofilters which can be found at
Here’s some of the main ones you’ll want to keep in mind:


  • The filter must be 1080 x 1920 pixels with a transparent background (.PNG)
  • The image must be less than 300KB in size
  • Snapchat suggests you only use the top or bottom 25% of the screen so Snapchatters can still see their original picture behind your filter
  • Make sure you have  the necessary rights and permissions to include any business names, marks, logos, or trademarks and you must also supply a business name while purchasing the filter.
  • Filters must not contain any photographs of people, URLs, phone numbers or emails.
  • Snapchat Geofilters must be between 20 thousand and 5 million square feet, and each filter can be active for a maximum of 30 days.

After briefing our super talented designer, I received the following two designs. We weren't 100% sure that the first design with our logo would be approved, so we made sure to create two versions of our filter: one with the EQU logo and one without.

snapchat options  
Step 2: Upload your filter

With a great looking design ready to go, now it was time to upload it! To upload your filter simply head to and use your brand's snapchat login details to sign in. If you don’t have a Snapchat account, now’s the time to take the leap and sign up!

When you sign-in you’ll be asked to upload your design.  After you upload your design you’ll see a cool preview of how it’ll look. 

upload snapchat filter

Step 3: Set the date and time

Once you’re happy with your filter, you’ll be asked to select the duration you’d like your filter to run for. Keep in mind that times and dates can’t be edited once you’ve submitted your filter,so ensure they’re correct. 

I selected November 7 from 10 am - 11pm to cover the Equilibrium Melbourne Cup Event and capture any additional passers-by. 

snapchat geofilter settings

Step 4: Choose the location

After choosing how long your filter will run for, it’s time to jump in and select the location that it will run in. Snapchat states that your area can’t be larger than 5 million feet (around 464,515 metres), but that won’t be a problem for most brands. 

To select the area you want to cover, simply enter the address in the search bar and then draw a fence around the area. I recommend being a little generous here. For the Equilibrium Melbourne Cup Party I selected an area surrounding the venue of the party as well as our office, which conveniently is located just across the road. 

Snapchat geofilter location

The total cost for our first Snapchat On-Demand filter campaign covering 29,000 Sq Ft for a day? 

$5 US ($6.94 AU)

Step 5: Submit

The final (and easiest) step in creating an On-Demand filter is simply submitting your request to Snapchat. At this stage you’ll be asked to submit your payment details

snapchat geofilter setup  

The Approval Process

Just a few hours after submitting our custom geofilter and crossing our fingers, we received the following email from Snapchat telling us our filter was approved. Good job on the super fast approval process Snapchat!

Snapchat geofilter approval process  
Snapchat’s approval email shows a preview of the geofilter, geographic targeting, the dates your filter with run and the amount that you’ll be charged. 

Equilibrium’s Melbourne Cup Day Filter in Action

On the day of the event at 10am I fired up the Snapchat app to see if our Geofilter was live. Sure enough after taking a snap and swiping through filters, our Equilibrium filter showed up. Note: Snapchat includes the word “sponsored” on any paid filters.

Equilibrium’s Melbourne Cup Day Filter in Action  

Measuring Our Filter’s Success

Although you can’t see the snaps that users take with an on-demand geofilter (Snapchat please make this a feature), you can however access some basic metrics to help you gauge how your filter performed. 

Once your filter has expired, head to Snapchat on your desktop and select “My Geofilters” from the left hand nav bar.  On this page you’ll be able to view the following metrics:

  • Swipes: How many times your Geofilter was seen in snaps that were created.
  • Uses: How many times your Geofilter was sent to a friend or added to a story.
  • Views: How many times your Geofilter was seen in a Snap sent directly to a friend or added to a story.
  • Usage percentage: How often your Geofilter was chosen to use in a Snap.
Note: According to Snapchat support, metrics do not update instantaneously, and will often lag by 24 hours from when your Geofilter completed its run.

Our Results

Snapchat geofilter results 
The Equilibrium Melbourne Cup Party was a huge success, with over 60 clients, suppliers, friends and staff attending. The filter went live about half an hour before the party and expired at 11pm in the evening: a runtime of 13 hours. 

Our results?

  • 106 swipes
  • 17 uses
  • 16% usage
For a grand total of $6.94, I have to say this trial run was definitely a success as well as a whole lot of fun!


Brand awareness on the cheap

Snapchat typically gets overshadowed by Instagram as an advertising platform, especially since Instagram rolled out Instagram Stories. But after experiencing the results of Snapchat On-Demand Geofilters, I’m surprised more brands in Perth aren’t taking advantage of Snapchat advertising to reach younger audiences. Snapchat’s filters are heaps of fun, look great and provides brands with one of the cheapest form of awareness around.

If your brand is looking to engage with audiences in a fun and innovative way, then give Snapchat On-Demand filters a shot and take advantage of the incredibly cheap impressions and high engagement while it lasts. It won’t be long before more advertisers discover the power of the platform and push the costs up. 

If you’d like to learn more about how Snapchat advertising could help your organisation, or would like some assistance in creating a results-based social media campaign, contact us today.