Takeaways from the Virtual Snap Partner Summit 2020
Across all the announcements, one common theme emerged throughout Snapchat’s annual keynote event dubbed the Snap Partner Summit: the platform seems to guide its innovation initiatives based on user engagement. Snapchat didn’t walk out on the virtual stage to reveal a revolutionary product or technology. Rather the team at Snapchat announced a slew of updates that focused on the pre-existing features already popular among their audience.
Of note, twelve million Snapchatters watch the news daily on the platform, so Snapchat has launched “Happening Now” to serve as a dedicated news source. Snap Maps reaches 200 million users each month, so Snapchat has added a new feature called “Places” to help connect those users to business locations and information.
These are just a few examples of how Snapchat is looking at its most popular features and developing them to serve users better and help brands integrate naturally.
With most of the updates presented at the Partner Summit, brands now have the ability to utilize or fit within these features and reach Snapchat’s young audience where they are already engaged. This is extremely important (and clever on Snapchat’s part) as the desire to reach Gen Z consumers is undoubtedly growing. Though, the ability to engage them in a meaningful manner is increasingly difficult.
As Snapchat continues to position itself as one of the leading platforms for engaging with Gen Z, these new updates and the platform’s ever-growing audience, warrant a watchful eye from brands looking to reach young consumers.
By now, most advertisers are aware by now that social platforms have seen an increase in growth as more consumers are staying home during the pandemic, and Snapchat has been a top leader in the space. In Q1, Snapchat reported 229 million daily active users (DAUs), reaching more users in the US than Twitter and TikTok combined. Additionally, as advertisers are increasingly focused on reaching Gen Z, Snapchat is primed and ready, reaching more 13-25-year-olds than Facebook and Instagram.
Not only has Snapchat expanded its reach, but its users are actively engaged. They create a total of over four billion snaps each day and use AR features nearly 30 times per day on average. And while Snapchatters do use the platform to connect with friends, they are increasingly using it to watch shows and discover content.
Time spent watching shows on Snapchat has doubled YoY while time spent watching Discover content has increased by 35%. This coverage is not just exclusive to entertainment sectors but has expanded into the news industry, as well, given the current climate, with over 80 million users using the platform to view coronavirus coverage.
In light of this trend, Snapchat released “Happening Now” to all US users, a dedicated news outlet where users can get the latest information and updates on what is happening in the world. Partnering with publishers like The Washington Post, Bloomberg, NBC News, and more, users are guaranteed to access editorially curated content across industry verticals.
Additionally, Snapchat is releasing ten new Snap Originals spanning a variety of genres, including comedy, esports, and beauty, and some of which will even integrate AR. Snapchat also announced quite a few updates to the platform, such as its new Action Bar, revamped Snap Maps that highlight local businesses, and the new Topics feature for its Stories.
What We’re Excited About as Advertisers
One update that will be of particular interest to advertisers is its new enhanced “Scanner” feature. With the feature, users will be able to scan items and logos to unlock lenses and exclusive content without the need for a QR code. For example, Snapchatters will soon be able to scan the Louis Vuitton monogram to be transported to a virtual installation showcasing its latest collections and classic trunks.
Further building on the platform’s AR capabilities, Snapchat will also be expanding its Creative and Camera Kits for creators to include AR and introduce dynamic lenses that will bring real-time info into the Snap lenses.
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For example, Yahoo Fantasy Sports has developed a creative lens designed for users to keep up with their favorite teams on Snap. At the same time, the MLB Park app will give fans both at the games and at home a chance to interact with teams and mascots through unique Snap lenses integrated into its own app.
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