Snapchat has been a bit of a underdog of social media and they chose to go that direction with an offer from Facebook in 2013 to buy them, they decided they wanted to continue building their platform and would eventually find advertising as their monitization strategy.
As much as we love being on the cutting edge of technology, we only recommend platforms and strategies that we know can generate a return on investment for our clients.
Even for our local area, 30,000 users are target-able in the 99163 zip code alone.
Three things we are excited about with SnapChat
1. Experian connection
So one of the three major credit bureaus has a connection inside of SnapChat allowing your advertising to target income levels, education, family makeup, and life events. These are accurate data points that are updated yearly and regularly.
2. Lifestyle choices
We are able to target based on how often an individual goes to get coffee, go to the hardware store or music event venues. They always monitor where an individual is going, even if ghost mode is turned on, and so then they inform advertisers like us so that we can target individuals who are most interested in your products.
3. Good case studies
Case studies are an indicator to us of how others are using the platform and how far it can extend.
https://forbusiness.snapchat.com/inspiration/ shows a lot of good successes. This is an area that Twitter has not been able to prove, even in a best case scenario, positive return on investments. SnapChat has even proven solid ROI for B2B, not just B2C.
Three things we would like to see improved in the platform.
1. Lower daily budget
We try to evaluate barriers to entry when we try to recommend a platform and SnapChat makes it a bit difficult in this case. They have a minimum $50/day ad spend budget. This is pretty hefty when Facebook and Google can both be under $5/day.
We are really hoping to see SnapChat lower this over time as the platform gets more popular.
2. Better scheduling and price control
The main issue here is throttling the spend. $50/day is already a bit much, but then if you are not careful, SnapChat will spend that $50 in a manner of hours. At time of writing, there are no controls in how the advertising is spent on a per-day per hour basis. This is a basic function inside of Facebook and Google and has definitely made a difference for our clients.
We have tried to throttle the ad spend via extremely low max Cost-Per-Click (CPC) bids. So instead of allowing SnapChat to figure out what a good (CPC) is, you can set the maximum to whatever you want. We tried setting the CPC to $0.20/click and the system decided to over-ride and had an average of $0.28/click and a max of $0.32/click. This may seem like not a big deal but at $0.32/click, your advertising budget will be spent 50% faster than if it just matched people at $0.20/click.
3. Faster back-end
This would be our biggest complaint in working with the platform is the loading and editing speed. We work in a lot of Platforms, have great machines, and solid internet connection, yet SnapChat is by far the slowest to make any changes to. This makes it difficult for our team to work together on a project as well as making changes on the fly to campaigns for rapid optimization.
In the end, for certain clients where the targeting and product make sense, we do recommend SnapChat. However, because of the above-listed issues, we tend to not recommend it when the ad spend budget is low and the timeline is short.