Filters are one of the biggest draws to this image-based social network. They can transform a normal image into something completely different. Normal filters are preset by Snapchat and change regularly. Geofilters are tied to a specific location and can be created by users. If you want to know how to make your own Snapchat filter, here is how you do it.
Also see our article How To Hide Your Snapchat Story
Snapchat filters can be used to promote an event, business, promotion, special offer or whatever you like. One of the great things about Snapchat filters is that you can tune them to your exact needs. So whether you’re promoting a friend’s wedding or your new café opening, you can do so within one of the world’s most popular social networks.
While there are two types of filters, those made by Snapchat to add to normal images and geofilters, both are called filters. For the purposes of this tutorial I will refer to geofilters as just filters.
The introduction of On-demand Filters by Snapchat gives you the freedom to create your own filter and set it to a time, date and location that suits you. You can create a filter as an individual to celebrate a wedding, christening, birthday or whatever. You can also create a filter as a business to promote an opening, special event or anything you like.
Geofilters are not free. You do pay for them but as prices start at a mere $5.99, they won’t break the bank. Geofilters are also time and space limited. They can be active from 24 hours up to 30 days and cover a geographical area of between 20,000 and 5,000,000 square feet. The price expands according to these settings.
Snapchat filters for individuals cannot include branding of any kind, no business logos, names or anything that a business would use. The intent is for individuals to use them to promote personal events or celebrations.
Businesses have to include their business name and can then use their own branding material as they see fit. The usual copyright restrictions apply. Geofilter T&Cs are here if you want to take a look.
Unusually for an outfit as large as Snapchat, each geofilter is manually checked and approved. This can take from 24 hours to a couple of days.
Make your own Snapchat filter
Before the update in June 2017, you could only create a Snapchat filter if you had the right tools and the right skills for the job. Snapchat then added the tools to make your own from within the app so you no longer have to contend with creating on their website.
As the website has provided filter creation tools for a while, let us make one in the app.
- Open Snapchat on your device.
- Select Settings and On-Demand Geofilter.
- Select a category for your filter from the list that appears. There are a range of them from weddings to baby showers.
- Edit the filter by using the tools on the right of the screen to add text, change colors and move things around.
- Select Next.
- Select a time and date for the Snapchat filter to go live. Then select a timescale for it to remain live.
- Create a geographical area within which the filter will appear. The minimum is 20,000 square feet and the maximum is 5 million. Draw an area on the map with your fingers until it covers the area you need it to.
- Name your Snapchat filter.
- Complete the submission form which includes your contact details and a payment agreement.
- Submit your filter to Snapchat and await their approval.
In Step 7, when you expand the area the price will increase accordingly. It should show on the top of the screen in the blue box that says ‘Your geofilter will cost…’ The actual cost depends on how long you want your filter to be live for and how large an area you want it to cover. You can tweak this quite a lot to get it just right.
The only thing to remember when setting a geographical area is that GPS isn’t exact. You should ideally expand the coverage area slightly larger than you need to make sure it will be picked up by a phone’s GPS. You have to balance that with the extra cost of expanding that area.
Once submitted, Snapchat will manually check and verify your filter before it is approved. You will know how much it costs before you submit it but you don’t have to pay until it has been approved. Once approved, you need to pay before the filter will go live. Once paid, it should go live at the time you set in Step 6.