Covering the Basics: Snapchat 101

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Covering the Basics: Snapchat 101

It’s the latest trend in the market – everybody wears it like a sole accessory. Heck, you can even call it the new “Apple product”! I can’t blame you, though, who can turn down those fitting geotag overlays or those super cute dog filters? Don’t get me started with the face swap because I’ll be rolling on the floor laughing with that one! For the last three weeks, I must have done over ten 30-seconds tutorial on Snapchat. Now, it’s time to share it with you.


Download the free app and simply sign up in three easy step.

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Build your profile. Make it as relevant as you can. For businesses or brands, add your business logo on your snap icon for better recognition. Making it public is best to further reach your audience. You can do that by going to Settings, select ‘Everyone’ on the Who Can… section.

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Add your main circle (friends and family) and the people who inspire you. Refer to the photo below and swipe down from the ghost icon. Select {insert icon} Add Friends. You can choose to add people using their username, from your phone’s address book, snapcode or random snapchatters – attainable using the activated geotag. I normally would just go by Add by Username.

Let’s do add one together. Click ‘Add by Username’, type ‘xoxjemxo’ and select [+] . There you go! Great work. You will now see my snaps and be part of my everyday life!  

1…2…3… SNAP!

Now on to the most important part — how to start snapping! You are immediately faced with a blank screen filled with top and bottom buttons and have no idea what to do next. You must be thinking “oh no!” Don’t panic! You are not the only one. I have five other people in my circle who downloaded Snapchat but stopped using it because they’ve gone clueless on how this app works. But luckily for you, I’m here!

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The photo above sums up what you need to know. All  you need to do is get into the habit of snapping.

Business: Be more creatively thoughtful with your post. What could interest your audience are the behind the scenes trends your business is currently up to.

Individual/Personal: You can go crazy! The more the merrier. Try to show your personality and stick with your brand voice. Just avoid inappropriate snaps.


Congrats! You’ve taken your first Snapchat photo/video. Now, what? You can either retake, add an emoticon, add text or start doodling on your pic (this is my current favourite!)

Time to distribute your amazing first photo/video. But before doing so ask yourself:

  • How long did you want this viewable? You can choose from 1 to 10 seconds. I tend to go with three (just because!).
  • Did you want  a copy of this photo/video saved in your phone gallery?
  • Did you want to share this with anyone in your contacts?

Check my very helpful cheat sheet below and decide what you want to do.

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Ta-da! You’re done. This should bring you to ‘Stories’ tab where you can see yours and your contacts’ snaps.


The best thing about Snapchat is the ability to make you feel like you’re close to the person you are watching. When I was traveling in Europe last year, I was Snapchatting everywhere, sharing my whole amazing trip to my contacts/audience, it felt like I am able to bring them the experience too.

Lately, Snapchat added sections in the Discover tab where it highlights events such as The Weeknd Birthday Party, the Oscars, Emmy’s and some Holidays. This gives the feeling that you are part of it too – the fun behind the scenes. The Holidays lets you see how people from different countries celebrate. It’s like watching TV, without the ads but only the contents you like. If you don’t like what you’re seeing, you can easily close the snap by sliding your thumbnail from the top to bottom or skip by tapping on the screen once.

The next best thing about Snapchat is that your photos and videos only stays for 24-hours.


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I think this is where Snapchat took it to the next level. In my opinion, no other social media platform is as engaging as these filters. It gave people reasons to take a snap and share.

Remember, tap once to take a photo and hold for a video.

Snapchat filters get updated every now and then, sometimes there are promotional banners (i.e, movies, national day of blah blah, etc.) you can try on. Constantly check for new ones and test it on your selfies!

We’re done here. You are now a Snapchat expert. Go on, make me proud! You can thank me later.

SNAPCHAT FUN FACT: There are 350 Million photos posted per day.

You just learned the basics of Snapchat. Snapchat 2.0 came out a few days ago and it allows users to video chat, send a video note and add stickers.


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