What Yext’s Snapchat Integration Means For Brick-And-Mortar Biz

The move reflects the growing importance of location in marketing — on all kinds of platforms.

Location-management specialist Yext launched its integration with Snapchat in July, in a move reflects more than just the popularity of the Millennial-favorite app — it indicates the growing importance of location in marketing as a whole. (Full disclosure: Yext is GeoMarketing‘s parent company. More details on that relationship here.)

With location-powered ads showing a direct link to in-store sales — and 76 percent of “near me” location searches resulting in a store visit within a day — more and more brands are turning an eye toward location management. And that means embracing all platforms with a location element, not just “traditional” geo-fenced ads or location Google searches.

“We’re starting to see a new categorization of location services with the rise of mobile — a new class of services that are not just search and directory. Snapchat is a great example of that,” said Marc Ferrentino, EVP Strategy at Yext. “We’re committed and dedicated to ensuring that our customers’ information is correct there too.”

GeoMarketing: What was the driver behind deciding to launch the Snapchat integration? 

Marc Ferrentino: It was actually two things. There were actually a few clients who brought it up initially, saying, “Hey, listen, this geofilter thing is really, really neat. We would love if you could send all of our data over to them.” That [sentiment] actually came from 7-Eleven and retailer Guitar Center.

But the main driver ultimately came when we first found out that Snapchat was going to introduce the [custom] geofilter. They had filters for neighborhoods; for cities. We realized that Snapchat was going to be another location service like our existing publishers — like all of the other location services where we want to make sure that the data was accurate and that our customers data was available in its most pristine form — so, we had been talking to them even before the geofilters first came out.

Our goal is simply to make sure that our customers look their best at the exact places where their customers are spending time or engaging with the brand. That could be on Google. It could be on Snapchat. It could be anywhere; that, in essence, is what they’re paying for. They’re not just paying for the network we have today: They’re paying for the fact that we are always striving to be up-to-date on the latest and greatest location platforms — that we’ll always do everything in our power to make sure that their information is correct on whatever the latest location service or location-oriented service is in the future, whether it be self-driving cars, Snapchat, Uber, chatbots, Pokémon Go, you name it.

I think that the Snapchat integration is just a great example of that dedication we have to making sure that your information is correct everywhere.

So it’s not just about the location network of today: It’s about striving to build the ‘network of tomorrow.’

Exactly. I think the cool thing that’s happening right now is that we’re starting to see a new categorization of location services with the rise of mobile — a new class of services that are not just search and directory. Snapchat is a great example of that. Uber is a great example. These are all examples of a new class of location end points, and we’re committed and dedicated to ensuring that our customers’ information is correct there too.

With the Snapchat integration, what can Yext now offer brick-and-mortar businesses that it couldn’t do before?

The main thing is that our clients can make sure that their location information is uploaded into Snapchat to make sure that their geofilter campaigns are triggering at the right point, are showing up at the right places, and are ensuring that when someone is at one of their establishments and they’re looking for a geofilter that the coordinates of their location are perfect.

It’s a very simple integration that allows them to take the information that is already set up in our system, send it over to Snapchat, and have it be available inside of Snapchat interface for use in running a geofilter [campaign.]

In your view, how do geofilters impact in-store sales or create repeat business? What’s the link there?

There’s a hard link that Snapchat has reported on, such as with one KFC example where [the chain] saw a lift in store visits within a week or so. This is literally a hard direct attribution of leveraging the geofilters so that then people [use them and see them when friends share them] and then visit the stores shortly after that.

Then, of course, there’s more of the halo effect of branding: Someone takes a very fun picture with their friends at a place where they’re having a good time. Obviously, what happens then is that you have a lot of user-generated content that’s acting as a massive winch for your brands. It’s real. It’s not manufactured advertising. It’s organic. That’s something that’s hard to quantify, but I think from a qualitative standpoint everyone would agree it’s a pretty important thing to have.

So what’s next at Yext?

[There are] a few things I can’t talk about yet, but I would say overall that there is just a general commitment to ensuring that our customers’ information will be correct on any new location service that may exist in the future. Like I said, that’s also what our customers are buying: They’re buying not just what we have today, but our commitment to ensuring that we’re staying up with the trends and up with whatever the latest place that their customers could be going.

Interested in learning more about the integration? Find Yext’s upcoming webinar dedicated to Snapchat here

About The Author
Lauryn Chamberlain Lauryn Chamberlain @laurynchamberla

Lauryn Chamberlain is the Associate Editor of A New York City based journalist, she specializes in stories related to retail, dining, hospitality, and travel.