Snapchat’s new Spectacles are the cool and hip looking camera sunglasses that users desperately want to get their hands on. Much of the conversation has not even been about the glasses itself but the wacky launch campaign which has been taking place.
Snapchat has made a hame out of getting a pair of Spectacles. Instead of letting anyone buy them online, they have been dropping a Snap Bot vending machine at different locations across America and providing a countdown map for users to follow before the next location is revealed.
Snapchat CEO Evan Spiegel referred to the spectacles as “a toy” and the quest to get a pair has become a game for fans. Every few days a new Bot machine is dropped off somewhere and it shows up on the map. Then the chaos commences as people flock to the location and stand in an insanely long line hoping that the machine won’t run out before it is their turn.
So far two machines have shown up in LA, another has been in Big Sur and the other has been in Oklahoma.
— Spectacles (@Spectacles) November 15, 2016
The launch has people talking in either excitement of disappointment when the bot drops and it could be thousands of miles away. The Spectacles Twitter account rounds up all the fun by re-tweeting people who are thrilled to get a pair and re-tweeting people who are frustrated and upset because they were not near the bot or it ran out while they were in line.
The campaign is marketing genius, either way people are talking about Spectacles and the hype has been off the charts. People show up at the vending machines in minutes and the line grows long as people hope they can get their hands on a pair. The limited availability of Snapchat Spectacles means that people want them even more now than they did before.
Even people who were not interested in Spectacles at all are being sucked into the hype and want to get their hands on a pair. What makes it even more special is how Snapchat has engaged with the media and influencers – it hasn’t engaged with them at all.
Usually the release of an anticipated gadget is accompanied with reviews from influencers and websites who have been handed an early preview. That hasn’t happened this time and everyone is on the same level playing field. Nobody has been given any special treatment and websites have not been given advance pairs to try out for themselves.
Websites who have posted reviews of Spectacles have had to get them in the same way that everyone else has. Wait for the machine to show up and then hope they can get there on time. Or they have had to resort to buying a pair on Ebay for an absolutely crazy price.
It is another form of brilliance from Snapchat, it means that Snapchat fans are controlling what is being said publicly about the Spectacles and there is not a bunch of tech blogs tearing the gadget apart and moaning about potential flaws.
We don’t know how long the game will continue and if or when Snapchat may make them more available to buy online but either way it is fun to watch even if we have no hope of getting them right now from a machine in Ireland!