The Evolution of Snapchat Interactions (and Where They’re Headed Next)

Users are fully engaged in the Snapchat experience, which creates limitless opportunities for brands to tell their stories.

All of the kids are using Snapchat these days, and marketers are about to follow suit in a big way. Snapchat’s new application-programming interface will allow key partners to develop more complex capabilities for advertisers such as direct-response, programmatic user targeting and analytics. Now is the time for marketers to incorporate Snapchat into their digital strategies.

Whether they realize it or not, this new capability from Snapchat is just another example of why every brand needs to operate from a mobile-first perspective. Big-name social media companies that host advertising platforms have been quick to incorporate mobile formats—think Facebook Canvas and Twitter Moments—so Snapchat’s move was as expected.


With 64 percent of Americans owning smartphones and 46 percent claiming that they can’t live without their mobile devices, it’s increasingly likely that your ad impressions land on mobile. No matter what platform you’re building for, whether it’s social or native opportunities, the first question you need to ask is, “How does this look on a phone?”

Engaging the mobile audience

Mobile is shaping the future of marketing. From Dunkin’ Donuts to Honda to AT&T to Clinique, many brands have already taken the leap to developing custom vertical video units. Target recently executed its latest designer product launch beautifully with Facebook’s Canvas unit.


What makes these campaigns so remarkable? They deliver a mobile experience tailored to the environment a consumer is engaged with. Adapting a mobile-first mentality as a creative best practice means understanding users’ mindsets when they’re on their devices.

One reason why Snapchat is so exciting is that it offers 100 percent screen visibility in the app. Users are fully engaged in the Snapchat experience, which creates limitless opportunities for brands to tell their stories, and other platforms are starting to follow its example.


Blurring the lines

People usually rely on their phones when they’re on the go, so you need to wow them with your content if you want them to stop and engage. How do you wow them? By understanding how, when and why they’re engaging with a social media platform.

For example, some people use their Facebook News Feed as a personalized newspaper, bringing in work-related content and posts of a more personal nature. This behavior is blurring the line between business-to-business and business-to-consumer in many industries as users curate what types of content they see based on who they like and follow. Smart marketers understand this new dynamic, and their creative strategies reflect it.

Consumers have spoken, and they expect mobile. Marketers must embrace it to compete. Platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat and other publishing venues are providing the tools to create unique, engaging mobile experiences. The time is now for all brands to get on board.

Aubry Parks-Fried is senior manager of digital innovations, social and native at digital advertising and media management software provider Centro.