After a $16 billion valuation, and topping Facebook as the most downloaded social media app in the iTunes store, Snapchat can no longer be dismissed or ignored by businesses – just ask Rob Cressy of Bacon Sports and Cressy Media.

“Sure, Snapchat isn’t mainstream yet like Facebook,” Cressy said. “But like Facebook – which started out just for college kids with a younger demographic – as it evolves, Snapchat is going to see older demographics and brands evolve onto the platform.”

This insight is just one of the many that we got to hear from Rob recently when he came in to speak to our agency about using Snapchat for marketing and advertising. If you are still skeptical as to why Snapchat is relevant to business, here are three key takeaways from our session that may convince you to give it a try.

1. It’s Where the Attention is Going

“From a marketing communications perspective, Snapchat is a communications platform that allows you to build relationships with your audience. And by continually building these relationships, you are strengthening the chances of converting your user or sending them down your marketing funnel to whatever is your end goal is,” Cressy said.

According to recent data from Snapchat, the average amount of time users spend in the app is 25-30 minutes – and with 60 million daily users in the U.S. and Canada alone, that type of reach is nothing to sneeze at.

So, the sooner a brand or agency gets started on Snapchat, the better positioned it will be when content pours in from more and more marketers and advertisers.

2. Snapchat Engages Users in a Different Way

Other social media networks like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram push a constant stream of organic and paid content to users, whereas with Snapchat it’s a completely different relationship. The content is time-sensitive, which creates a sense of urgency around each message. And because users also have the chance to pick and choose what they see in the app, this creates a very different mindset as to how they engage with content. This seemingly small step gives users a feeling of control over what they see, instead of being served an overwhelming amount of content.

Users on Snapchat will interact and engage with a company that sends them valuable content. The mindset of the app environment is tailored to personalized experiences, so as long as you are being authentic, having fun and providing value to your audience on Snapchat, your audience will trust you and reward you with consistent engagement and loyalty.

3. The Platform is Designed for Targeted Communications

“Think about Snapchat the same way you would about any other advertising medium,” Cressy said. “All the same principles for success apply to this – it’s targeted advertising.”

With Snapchat, you have the opportunity to talk to your target customer multiple times every single day. As marketers, isn’t that the key to what we’re always looking to do to remain top-of-mind with target audiences?

In addition to sending personalized messages directly to specific users, you can create geofilters for specific events or trade shows. You can even target competitors’ stores or locations for acquisition or even recruiting purposes, smart right? and even run a promotional campaign that offers discount codes or prize drawings for Snapchat audiences only.

And if you are concerned about how you measures success on Snapchat, there are plenty of metrics to track through the platform:

• How many users opened your Snap?
• How many users took a screenshot and/or shared your Snap?
• Who replied to your Snap?
• How many times was your geofilter used? What were the impressions?

Closing Thoughts

At the end of the day, Rob made it clear that there are three fundamentals to any successful Snapchat marketing strategy: have fun, provide value and be authentic.