- Snapchat, the image messaging service with 166 million daily average users, on Monday introduced products to make its ad delivery platform more useful to mobile marketers. The self-serve Ad Manager tool, which was announced a month ago, lets customers buy ad space with credit cards in the U.S. The prices will be set by auction and will allow small businesses a way to advertise on the platform, according to CNBC. The company will review all ads for quality.
- Snapchat is also seeking major brand advertisers with its Snapchat Certified Partners program to connect marketers with third-party providers of ad tech tools. The program will help more than 25 agencies and vendors, including Omnicom’s Resolution Media, OrionCKB, SocialCode, Unified, Hyfn and Adaptly, understand the platform and how to better design and measure their ad campaigns. Participants receive a digital badge and will get additional training and reviews to remain part of the program, according to Adweek.
- Next month, the company will provide advertisers with access to the Snap Publisher tool to create campaigns that appear in Snapchat’s unique vertical video format. The tool imports brand-related images, trims horizontal videos for the vertical format and provides templates for different campaign objectives, among other features.
Snap, the parent company of Snapchat, has steadily added features that let advertisers harness the app’s ability to reach highly localized audiences in real time. By accepting smaller payment amounts, the app can expand clientele among small businesses that depend heavily on foot traffic, like restaurants and retailers. Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest are among the social media companies that accept credit card payments in various regions around the world.
Snapchat also continues to address one of the biggest hindrances to advertising on its platform: its unique vertical video format. While major advertisers and content providers have the resources to create specialized ads for Snapchat, there's a major barrier to entry for smaller marketers who don't yet have that bandwidth. Starting next month, advertisers of all sizes will be able to use the Snap Publisher to create ad campaigns instead of having to use expensive video software that typically only major companies can afford to use.
Snap is doing everything it can to grow sales, especially with Facebook moving in on its Stories feature to post pictures and videos in temporary online albums. Snapchat downloads dropped 22% in April and May this year compared to the same period in 2016, according to data compiled by app analytics firm Sensor Tower, soon after Facebook rolled out its Instagram Stories feature. Last month, Snap disappointed investors by reporting $149.6 million in Q1 revenue, missing estimates for $158 million in its first quarter since its $3 billion initial public offering in March, Forbes magazine reported. Adding an affordable advertising platform for businesses of all sizes is Snapchat's latest move to harness a previously untapped group and boost revenue as it rivals Facebook.