From Ryan Seacrest and “GMA” to Jared Leto and NPR, TheWrap picks the brands and influencers to follow on the social media platform in 2015
It’s been a big year for Snapchat.
The 10-second photo messaging app added text messaging and video chats; debuted its first ad — a 20-second trailer for Universal Pictures’ horror movie “Ouija” — launched Snapcash, an easy way for users to exchange money, and, after introducing location-based photo filters, announced it would allow users to create and share their own geofilters.
For all this, Snapchat earned the title of Fastest Growing App of 2014, made a splashy New Year’s Eve debut in New York City, streaming global snaps on two video screens in Times Square and was recently valued at $10 billion after raising $485 million from 23 investors.
That’s not bad for a mobile app where content disappears after its been viewed. But even as Hollywood has jumped on board, Snapchat’s 30 million monthly users remain largely under the age of 25. So whether you’re looking to play catch up in 2015 or just want to add to your friends list, take a look at some of the media outlets, influencers and artists who’ve mastered the now-you-see-it-now-you-don’t social platform.
1. Username: ryanseacrest
Why you should follow: Ryan Seacrest is no slouch when it comes to social media but nothing gives you better access to the backstage action at events like “New Year’s Rockin’ Eve” or the iHeartRadio Music Festival like the host’s real-time snaps.
2. Username: caseyneistat
Why you should follow: You might have seen the viral video Casey Neistat created this year, pitting Facebook against Snapchat. (Hint: Mark Zuckerberg’s platform didn’t pass the teen test.) The producer-director brings the same energy to his own account, whether he’s sharing snaps from around the world or his local cineplex.
3. Username: nowthisnews
Why you should follow: The mobile news startup was one of the first news outlets on the platform. NowThisNews delivers daily headlines via images overlayed with text and drawings. It’s a visual style that’s well suited to the app’s younger demo.
4. Username: gma_abc
Why you should follow: “Good Morning America” social media correspondent Tony Reali takes advantage of celebrity guests like Taylor Swift, Seth Rogen, Lady Gaga and Jamie Foxx to share behind-the-scenes snaps and quickie interviews.
5. Username: lacma_museum
Why you should follow: The Los Angeles County Museum of Art was the first museum to join Snapchat and has received widespread praise for its snap art, which pairs online slang with classic masterpieces.
6. Username: fallontonight
Why you should follow: The “Tonight Show With Jimmy Fallon” uses Snapchat to announce upcoming guests. Followers are also challenged to submit their own drawings of pegacorns or turkey selfies, which are then shared to Tumblr.
7. Username: nprnews
Why you should follow: NPR’s cerebral strategy is perfectly suited to their brand — the non-profit shares a daily offbeat fact from a recently reported story.
8. Username: mashable
Why you should follow: Mashable’s Snapchat team excels at visual storytelling, whether they’re celebrating Central Park’s 150th anniversary, Shark Week or National Cheese Pizza Day. The account also offers a glimpse inside the company’s Flatiron District offices, provides live coverage during tech releases and shares Snapchat updates as they happen.
9. Username: girlshbo
Why you should follow: HBO’s “Girls” was one of the first TV series to see Snapchat’s potential, especially for its coveted young demo. They jumped on the platform last January and have used it since then to post quotes, behind-the-scenes photos, tune-in reminders and previews.
10. Username: jaredleto
Why you should follow: Using Snapchat’s scribble feature, the Oscar winner specializes in decorating his self portraits with psychedelic war paint. Leto will also share run-of-the-mill selfies and scenery snaps from his far-flung travels.
11. Username: mtv
Why you should follow: The music network embraced Snapchat in 2014 by revealing its 2014 Video Music Awards nominees through the visual messaging app. MTV also regularly posts snaps of guests like Daniel Radcliffe, Ed Sheeran, Iggy Azalea and Demi Lovato dropping by the studio.
12. Username: mplatco
Why you should follow: MPlatco (real name Mike Plato) has been described as the Van Gogh of Snapchat and it’s not hard to see why. Wizards, superheroes and pop culture icons are this artist’s speciality whether drawing for himself or others.
13. Username: jeromejarre
Why you should follow: After conquering Vine, French entrepreneur and viral video creator Jerome Jarre turned his attention to Snapchat where he amassed 1.5 million friends at last count. Jarre co-founded GrapeStory, a talent agency for Vine and Snapchat stars.
14. Username: Shonduras
Why you should follow: Shonduras (real name Shaun McBride) was dubbed a “Snapchat celebrity” early on and hasn’t looked back since. Along with his own upbeat 10-second stories, he does work for brands like Disneyland, Major League Soccer and more.
15. Username: washingtonpost
Why you should follow: The Washington Post has been experimenting with Snapchat this year, using the photo and video sharing platform for cover everything from the Super Bowl and a performance of the Nutcracker at the Kennedy Center to crowd sourcing snaps during cold weather and the 2014 election.
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