There were many that were originally skeptical of Snapchat as a marketing platform because of the high costs and how content expires, but times have certainly changed. Marketers are increasingly looking to Snapchat to reach the valuable millennial and Generation Z audiences. As a result, eMarketer estimates that the social sharing platform will generate $366.69 million in ad revenues this year and $935.46 million in 2017.
Snapchat’s Discover feature currently generates about 43 percent of the platform’s revenue. However, eMarketer expects that things will shift to Stories next year—a feature that makes up 37.8 percent of the company’s US ad business. Snapchat gains 95 percent of its ad revenue from the US, and eMarketer reported last year that about 45 percent of those users are millennials.
“To engage those often hard-to-reach consumers, Snapchat has expanded its advertising portfolio over the past year to include a wider array of video ads, and more sponsored geofilters and sponsored lenses,” said Cathy Boyle, eMarketer principal analyst.
A recent report from Bloomberg revealed that Snapchat saw more daily use than Twitter. So marketers have been getting very creative with Snapchat’s features, particularly the animated lenses and filters, despite the temporary nature of the content. Furthermore, the platform has been steadily expanding its capabilities. In August, Sony Pictures was the first to use 360-degree video within Snapchat to promote the horror movie, Don’t Breathe.
Snapchat also saw its first multi-level video game featuring tennis pro Serena Williams. Gatorade launched Serena Match Point last month—an 8-bit tennis game that’s timed to coincide with the US Open.
Promotions on Snapchat are becoming increasingly sophisticated, and are certain to become more so with the introduction of behavioral targeting features on the ad network. However, nothing beats the classics, as Kim Kardashian had some fun with her son, Saint West on his 9-month birthday using Snapchat lenses and sharing them with fans.