This Startup Claims to Have Cracked the Code on Measuring Branded Snapchat Photos and Video

Gnack launches platform to take influencer buying programmatic

Austin, Texas—Snapchat data is rich for marketers these days, and a startup at South by Southwest Interactive says that it's found a way for brands and creators to measure how many eyeballs their "snaps" are seen by.

This week, Austin-based Gnack is launching a mobile app and a website that matches up brands and creators to run Snapchat and Instagram influencer campaigns. For influencers, the app requires folks to sign in with their Instagram account. Then, they can add their Snapchat account, which tracks how many times their ephemeral photos and videos are opened and how many people take screenshots of the content to share with their friends. 

Those kinds of insights should please marketers who have complained that Snapchat doesn't fork over the same kind of data as Facebook, Google or Twitter campaigns. Gnack also helps brands run sponsored Instagram campaigns and plans to add Pinterest by the end of the year.

On the marketer side, brands can log into the website to set up campaigns and parameters for what types of influencers they're looking for by number of followers, interests or locations.

The number of followers is a particularly important stat for brands to look at, said Chico Tirado, co-founder and CRO of Gnack. Instead of focusing on social media stars who have millions of followers, his company urges brands to work with "micro-influencers," or people who have less followers but more social engagement.

"There's a ton of value in everyday influencers, which can have three to five times the engagement rate than someone with 10,000 or more followers," Tirado told Adweek. "We wanted a way to automize the entire process—marketers can spend more than 200 hours vetting influencers."

Tirado said Gnack's already worked with Johnson & Johnson on a campaign where influencers went to a specific retailer to buy a product and post about it on social media. This summer, Nestlé will run a similar effort to drive retail sales with 100 or more influencers.

Marketers have to spend at least $10,000 to hire social influencers through Gnack, although Tirado said he expects for the cost to come down in the coming months.

To launch the app, Gnack is aiming to break a world record for the most people dressed in banana suits at the same time as a PR stunt at The Belmont in downtown Austin on Sunday from 1 to 4 p.m.

The startup got Del Monte to sponsor the event and ship 500 banana suits to Austin. The current world record is held by EDM festival The Voyage with 629 people and Gnack is expecting 700 to 800 people to turn out on Sunday, including popular influencers like Shaun McBride and Michael Platco—more commonly known as Shonduras and MPlatco on Snapchat.

"Just like Facebook's programmatic platform, we want to streamline the process for influencers and advertisers and be able to go to brands selling programmatically," Tirado said.  

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