While Snapchat may be the hottest new messaging app on the block, it might not be the most effective. Snapchat marketing efforts seem difficult for brands to measure because its reporting capabilities lack robustness.
The messaging app started running ads in late 2014, Adweek reports. Brands can pay for “snaps”—short videos or photos—that appear in users’ recent updates feed. With more than 100 million users, many of whom belong to the coveted college student and Millennial demographics, Snapchat seems poised to lure brands to its fast-growing network.
But the platform’s lack of robust reporting capabilities is a serious drawback for would-be Snapchat marketers. Adweek reports that Snapchat can’t tell brands how many women versus men saw an ad, for example, nor can it tell which age brackets saw it. And because users only see an ad for a few seconds, it makes the concept an even harder sell.
That said, early analysis does seem to indicate that Snapchat users respond well to ads on the service. Millward Brown Digital’s analysis found that ad campaigns were received positively by Snapchat users. Sixty percent of “Our Stories” viewers and 44 percent of “Brand Stories” viewers said they liked the ads. That level of positivity beats out most other smartphone ads: Comparatively, only 17 percent of consumers favorably view smartphone ads, Millward Brown Digital found.
Hopefully, continued developments in the Snapchat marketing arena will improve its reporting capabilities. Better analytics can help content marketers better deliver Snapchat-ready stories to an eager audience. Given Snapchat’s growing user base, content marketers may find that sharing an image or video, even if only for a few seconds, may be more valuable than previously thought.
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