Over the last couple of years, Snapchat has been trying to catch up with Facebook and Twitter as marketable Social Media brand. The platform has been developing more and more attractive features for advertisers looking to use it to publish.
In 2016, it began to offer app-install ads, that gave users a direct route from advert to app store, helping it tap into the huge app discovery market that has been pioneered largely by Facebook.
It started with the match-3 app Cookie Jam, and has since been expanding and refining the feature, today offering goal based bidding, to allow app advertisers to target users most likely to follow through and install.
Snapchat’s latest development is a self-serve ad platform, which opens them up to more possible clients in the digital advertising community. Their new ad manager – currently available only to chosen launch partners, but in the process of being rolled out to all – is a more centralised, user friendly, and perhaps most importantly fee-free way to buy advertising space on the messaging platform, and target and track the performance of those adverts across the site.
While the new platform opens to all this summer, those wishing to get a head start on their rivals can apply any time before June for a chance to be granted access. Snapchat’s stated aim is to open itself up to businesses “big and small”, and they are also allowing third parties to sponsor and manager ‘Geofilters’ – location enabled overlays to assist targeting.
This democratises Snapchat’s advertising features, allowing in smaller advertisers who’ll benefit from the user friendly new system, which compares to Facebook’s ad-manager, and Google’s own Adwords technology. It means social users of Snapchat will be seeing a broader variety of adverts, giving the ones that excel a chance to rise to the top.
Agencies with good Native experience are likely to lead the way here. Snapchat is a platform highly focused on user generated content and the most effective adverts will avoid disrupting the user’s experience. They’ll sit in stream with the rest of Snapchat’s content, allowing the browser to absorb them rather than demanding attention by ‘breaking’ that experience and fostering resentment.