Snapchat has been a lot more ad friendly of late. It still lacks some features brands love—giving users an easy way to follow their accounts and like their content, for instance—but it finally implemented the ability to share.
Sharing is limited to the Discover section, where 12 digital publishers—including Snapchat—post daily highlights of their content including videos, articles and GIFs. Cosmo, Vice, Food Network and ESPN are among the first Discover partners, forming a test group of sorts for the potentially lucrative service.
Snapchat is in talks with more publishers and is still refining how the section appears in the app, according to sources. Right now, users have to swipe right two screens to find the Discover channels, and the lack of visibility is one of the early complaints.
Still, the publishers can each get hundreds of thousands—even millions—of views a day, and big sponsors are signing up. Some pay around $500,000 for takeovers on Discover, one source said.
Earlier this month, Pitch Perfect 2 and Mad Max, two box office hits, squared off with Discover sponsorships across most of the channels when they opened on the same weekend. Philadelphia Cream Cheese and Zyrtec also have been recent Discover sponsors. Snapchat splits the revenue with its publishing partners.
Snapchat intrigues advertisers, and many even say they are bullish. But, they want more than just a commercial interruption that simply disappears.
The move to allow sharing, a bit of a departure from Snapchat's one-to-one messaging roots, was seen as the first of many the service will have to make to give brands a more mature marketing channel.
Since sharing is so new, the media partners, guided by Snapchat, are coming up with innovative posts that encourage users to pass them along. And, it's safe to say, marketers want to learn whatever tricks they can to get more shares for their Snapchat messages.
Here's a look at seven pieces of content from Discover channels that just scream, "Share me":
- Give users an image they can decorate with an emoji (like the one above).
- Have users fill in the blank.
- Have fun with guacamole and lists, two things people love.
- Imagine what their first hit record would be called.
- Users can circle their current moods as expressed by Beyoncé lyrics.
- Come up with funny names for a boat.
- Dialog bubbles are fun to fill in when the subject is The White Stripes.