Snapchat is making a bigger play for direct-response budgets, and brands are taking notice.
Ad executives have noticed a change in tack when Snapchat pitches its ad business. The platform isn’t just interested in creative budgets, and its commercial team isn’t focused on using reach and impressions to sell ads. There’s more emphasis on how formats like videos and geofilters can be optimized to drive business goals, such as app installs and even sales in some cases. For Snapchat, chasing direct-response budgets is part of a wider play to get media planners to give it a permanent place on media plans.
Snapchat has been courting media planners through its certified partner program, which is based on media spend, according to an ad buyer. Agencies are given virtual badges — gold, silver and bronze — based on how much they spend. The more budget they commit to Snapchat, the more support they get from its creative and development teams, the executive said. Direct response, according to the executive, is a recurring theme in those discussions because more brands are testing whether Snapchat drives business goals. (Snapchat did not respond in time with comments for this story.)
As a performance-led advertiser, Skyscanner has always wanted Snapchat ads for direct response rather than brand building. After several tests, Skyscanner hasn’t made the platform an always-on part of its media plan, but what it has seen is encouraging. When the search engine has run localized videos on Snapchat that feature the most popular holiday destinations in a specific market, the cost per impression on those posts has been three times lower than when it hasn’t used localized creative, while the swipe-up rate to download the Skyscanner app has doubled, according to Anna Derezinska, who heads up the advertiser’s paid marketing.