Snapchat Strategy

Why having the same username and “appear as” name is important when growing your following on Snapchat.


One of the MOST important strategies I realized fast when using the app was making sure people knew who to follow. If my content was going to be talked about, I needed to make sure people knew who to recommend. If you are a Marketer, Brand or Individual looking to take advantage of the word of mouth component of Snapchat, having the same username and “appear as name” may be the most important strategy to execute from the moment you open your account.

The Basics: 

1. Username: The name that people use to find and “Add you as a Friend.” This is your unique identity on Snapchat. It’s chosen when signing up and cannot be edited after signing up. Your username can ONLY be found and viewed by the people you have added in their “My Friends” contacts.

  1. Snapchat Name(Appear As Name): This is how you appear to Snapchatters you add or have added you on Snapchat. This name can be edited or changed whenever you wish. This name is what your friends see when you send them a Snap (Direct Message or video) or when you add Snaps to your Story.

Now, here’s why you should have the same username and appear as name on Snapchat:

Before the snapcode feature was added in a recent update, the growth of artists, brands, small businesses and individuals relied solely on word of mouth. In all reality, I still believe this is the case.

Your appear as name is your “Snapchat Brand.” It’s what viewers share with their friends when think you are worth following. This is why it’s important that your username and “appear as” name should always stay the same. While a person can search and find you using your username — your “appear as name” is what will be seen 100% of the time by your followers when you send Snaps and update your story.

So say for example your username is “brownie154” and your appear as name is “John Brown.” You created this awesome snapstory and people are super excited to tell their friends about it.

“Wow! You guys need to go follow ‘John Brown!’ He just put up the coolest story!”

They aren’t going to say “Go follow brownie154” because that’s not your name — at least that’s not the name that appears in their feed.

It’s very unlikely that these people would be able to find you or, even worse, they would probably end up following the username “JasonBrown” who has used Snapchat since he uninstalled it 5 minutes after downloading it. Again, you can only search and be added by your username in Snapchat, not your appear as name.

Snapchat’s current downfall is that it doesn’t validate or confirm people you follow. Snapchat also dosn’t display your username along with your appear as name.

Think of all the exposure and opportunities you are missing because of this!

BUT, if your username and appear as name are the same, there’s no chance of anyone missing out on your awesome content because they would be able to find you.

I did a little math and, on average, 9 out of every 10 people (that’s 90%!!) have added me by my username (which they likely discovered through word of mouth). The rest are by snapcode.

Think about it. Stories only last 24 hours, so if your snap story is amazing and gets people excited to share with their friends before the 24 hours is up, you bet there will be screenshots, texting and leaning over the cubicle to share your appear as name with their friends who have not yet discovered you.

Remember, your appear as name is the first thing people see and the last thing they will remember.


If your username and appear as name do not match, fix it now. When people are recommending you to others, it’s the name they remembered seeing over and over and over again. That name should be your Snapchat username — the name they can type in to find and follow you.

Snapchat does not inform users if they are following the correct brand or person, so it’s imperative that you keep reminding people which Snapchat username to follow by keeping it top of mind and consistent throughout their experience with you.

Steps to Fix the Problem

  1. Tap or SWIPE DOWN on the Ghost icon on the camera screen.
  2. Tape on your Name.
  3. A pop up will appear with “Edit Name”
  4. Edit, replace or add in your Snapchat Username

Note: – Do not use the @ symbol and Spaces in your username. Snapchat doesn’t allow people to search with the symbol or spaces and trust me, people will type that in when trying to add you. – Once you’ve edited your appear as name, it will only change when new people add you, Snapchat doesn’t change this for users that have already added you. Sorry. – The character limit is 30, so use it wisely, you can add your real name and username if limits allows.

Let me know you thoughts! Would love to hear from you.

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