Connecting with your audience through social media is no longer optional. 78 percent of people in the United States have a social media profile, an increase of 54 percent in less than 10 years.

The strategy is obvious, but finding the right network for the right audience is not always so clear. The social channels are changing frequently – especially among younger people – so your marketing needs to be up to date and able to adapt.

If you’re looking to connect with a younger, mobile audience, Snapchat is the rising social star and they’re now making it easier to buy ads on their platform with the launch of their advertising API (application programming interface).

There are undeniable benefits of marketing through Snapchat. Aside from the ability to be creative and try something new and exciting, the platform allows you to reach an extensive part of the population. There are currently over 100 million daily users viewing over 10 billion videos per day, an increase of more than 350% in the last year.

On any given day, Snapchat has the ability to reach 41% of all 18-34 year olds in the United States, including 60% of all 13-24 year olds. That’s a lot of reach!

And, Snapchat appears to have staying power: They are projected to add 26.9 million users by 2020, double the projections for Twitter or Pinterest.

Snapchat provides brands with four different avenues to reach their audience:

1. Snap Ads
Advertisements shown between user stories possess the ability to appear as full screen videos with volume. The first few seconds of these videos are the most crucial because users have the ability to skip the ad by simply tapping the screen. The ads also provide the option to swipe-up and view extended videos or articles without having to leave the Snapchat app. The swipe-up rate for Snap Ads is 5x higher than the average click through rate on similar platforms.

2. Geofilter
A type of filter Snapchat users can pick after taking a picture. Two main types, On-Demand and Sponsored. On-Demand Geofilters provide restrictions on where the filter can be viewed, but are a cheaper option for companies looking to save money. Sponsored Geofilters are more expensive but can apply to the entire country and anyone who takes a snapchat will have access. The prominent benefit of Geofilters is the visibility among users. The average Geofilter typically reaches 40-60% of daily snapchat users.

3. Sponsored Lens
Provides users the ability to add creative elements to themselves before they take a picture. The user holds down on the screen where their face appears in order to bring up the different lenses. The average user will play with the lens options for about 20 seconds. Gatorade produced one of the most successful sponsored lens campaigns by providing users with the feeling of winning the Super Bowl and having a bucket of Gatorade dumped on their head. This campaign led to an average of 30 seconds spent playing with the lens, an eight point increase in purchase intent and 165 million total views.

4. Create a Company Snapchat
Allows you to engage with a large number of individuals across another social media platform in a unique way. Be cautious not to reproduce what you are putting on other social media platforms, as Snapchat users will get bored and skip right by. Focus on ideas such as live events (product launches), never before seen content, promo codes or a behind-the-scenes look.

Remember Snapchat is all about being casual and relatable. Don’t post images for too long and don’t string together too many pictures or videos as the time can add up. There’s a reason they call it Snapchat.