Why Museums Should Embrace Using Snapchat On Tours

Cody Nailor

PR Associate

If you’ve been paying attention, you’ve likely seen or heard about accounts like Art History Snap on Tumblr, or come across lists of funny museum Snapchats like these:

Recently, the New York Times even named museums “the New Social Media Darlings” as museums like the Los Angeles County Museum of Art have gained notoriety for their pithy Snapchat accounts.

In order to engage with and educate a younger, more diverse audience, many businesses are turning to social media – and museums are no different.

We love Snapchat for museums for two reasons:

  • It’s visual. Snapchat’s interface is built around sharing pictures, which appear on the viewer’s screen for 10 seconds or less.
  • It’s instantaneous. It takes practically no time at all to snap and post a photo.

Through encouraging the use of Snapchat, you’re allowing your guests to show off your museum’s best assets – the pieces in its collection.

These objects were made to be looked at, interacted with, and enjoyed. Due to Snapchat’s quick user interface, the phone will be in the user’s hand (distracting them) for a very brief period of time, allowing them to share out their favorite parts of your tour while barely interrupting it.

By allowing your guests to post about their tour on social media, particularly Snapchat, you are actually encouraging direct marketing to inherently interested parties. Your guest (presumably) has followers who are interested in the things he or she posts – and when they post content from your tour, they’re marketing straight to engaged parties.

But perhaps the biggest benefit of all is what the user gains by posting pictures from your museum on social media – a better understanding and richer impression of the things they saw. As your guest is looking for things they want to share, they’re examining pieces from many angles, and thinking of captions – through this process, they come to see the pieces in a new light.

Humans have been experiencing the same emotions since the dawn of time, and as your guest examines the pieces, looking for some to post, they’ll begin to see a bit of themselves in the art as they notice and experience the emotions of the subjects.

Through allowing the use of Snapchat and other social media platforms on your tours, your museum gains fans, and your audience gains a deeper appreciation for the art in your collection.

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