Not long ago Evan Spiegel, co-founder and CEO of Snapchat, famously said that he doesn’t want for the network to “creepily” target users. But it looks like reality has dawned upon him. And that reality is to monetize any social media or digital platform, targeting audiences on the basis of behavior is a necessity. Of course, he was right in the sense that random and unwanted ads play a huge role in repelling user bases, but there are always ways to it in a better way. And a social sharing platform like Snapchat, which has an immense user base of 100 million active daily users with a 10 billion daily video views, shouldn’t make the mistake of missing out on such a huge opportunity of revenue generation. That’s why Snapchat’s new ad tools are exciting for both marketers and the Los Angeles-based company. Here’s a look at its three new targeted formats.
A) Snapchat’s New Ad Tools: Snap Audience Match
This product of Snapchat will enable marketers to take existing lists of email addresses and mobile device IDs and anonymously match that data with Snapchat’s own set of consumer data to enhance ad targeting. But care will be taken that while executing these ad campaigns, it will not disclose any personal data beyond what marketers already have. Besides, consumers will have the option to opt out of the Audience Match product, but until then will have to tolerate any unwanted ad attention.
But the truth is that Snapchat is not rolling out anything new here. The company is following the ad-targeting playbook popularized by, if not written by, Facebook and already adopted by other major ad-supported digital platforms like Google, Twitter, Pinterest and LinkedIn. It’s a clear cut attempt to compete with the Facebook’s dominance on the social web.
B) Snapchat’s New Ad Tools: Snapchat Lifestyle Categories
It’s just not enough to target customers based on their age, gender or geographical location, if only because people who belong to the same age or gender group may have different interests. The core of targeted advertisement is to target the interest and that’s what Snapchat Lifestyle Categories will do. With this tool, advertisers will be able to target people based on the types of videos they watch, like gaming or beauty.
C) Snapchat’s New Ad Tools: Snapchat Lookalike
Using the same process as Snap Audience Match, once you’ve uploaded your audience data, Snapchat will be able to use those matched users as templates and create a similar audience based on related characteristics and behaviors. This should prove an easy entry point for first-time Snapchat marketers to see how Snapchat users act and, ideally, compare that to the behavior of audiences on other targeted channels.
Again, it’s no different than the Facebook namesake. It works as per the lookalike algorithm that differentiates and picks the consumers based on certain similarities and characteristics of existing audience
It’s quite clear that Snapchat is sharpening the sword of their targeted ad efforts. Snapchat’s new ad tools will make the focus as narrow as possible to make sure that the right advertising is reaching out to the right customers. Regardless of how good an ad’s content is, if it’s irrelevant to the customers it’s essentially useless. It will be interesting to see if this new shift, at least for Snapchat, will answer the growing pain points of platform monetization.
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For more ideas on how to boost sales, recognition, and engagement with visual social content, take a look at our guides, “Sell Experiences, Not Clothes: Visual Commerce and the Fashion Industry,” “The New Wave of User Generated Content: 7 Concepts for 2017 and Beyond,” “A Picture’s Worth 1,000 Words: A Visual Commerce Best Practices eBook,” and “Visual Commerce Permissions: Vital Best Practices for Using User Generated Content!“