Snapchat's various location-based filters have turned into one of the service's defining features. It started out as a way to add flair to your photos and videos in specific locations Snapchat deemed worthy, but the company opened up community submissions so that any neighborhood or area, no matter how small, could be represented. Today, Snapchat's expanding its geofilter submission program in an attempt to make some revenue: you can now pay to create a custom, temporary geofilter for an event. And for the first time, brands and businesses can submit a geofilter that features their logos.
While the older community geofilters were more focused on areas of a city, these paid geofilters are being pitched as the kind of thing you would feature temporarily for a private event. As such, they can be confined to much smaller areas for more specific amounts of time. The minimum geofenced area starts at 20,000 feet; a portion of city block or enough to cover a business location. You can expand that sizing up to 5 million square feet, which Snapchat says will be enough to cover several city blocks. As for timing, you can have the filter live for anywhere from an hour up to 30 days.
These more customizable filters aren't free, however -- they start at $5 and increase depending on the duration and size of the geofence. Snapchat's obviously targeting brands with this initiative. It's not hard to imagine a event sponsor making its own geofilter, for example. But individuals could get use out of them as well for things like big events (think weddings, big holiday gatherings, and the like).
If you want to give one of these a shot, however, you'll want to play ahead -- Snapchat's implementing a review process for these paid geofilters. After you design your filter (Snapchat is offering up some templates to get you started), pick the map area and filter duration, you submit it to get it approved. Snapchat says it'll usually turn those reviews around in a day, so you don't need tons of advance notice -- but you can't just throw one up at will.
This move comes shortly after Snapchat closed its paid filter store, the company's last attempt at monetizing its product. The focus on businesses here makes it likely this next move will find some success as thirsty brands try to court Snapchat's coveted young userbase. If you want to give them a try, Snapchat says you can start submitting today -- but note that you can only use them in the US, UK and Canada for now.