It’s been an exciting first half of 2017 for Snapchat. To compete with major players and increase ad revenue, the new kid on the block ramped up its roadmap and made some strategic moves by announcing partnerships and rolling out marquee feature enhancements.
We took a quick look at Snapchat’s development over the past six months:
- January: Media partnerships
In a bid to target a younger demographic, Disney partnered with Snapchat to create a series of Bachelor recaps dubbed “Watch Party”. Given that a majority of Snapchat’s ad revenue comes from TV’s big spenders, the media partnership set out to curate exclusive content for the visual-first social channel with the hope of driving ad sales.
- February: One beverage at a time
As digital platforms steal ad revenue from traditional broadcast media, Snapchat hopped on the tent pole marketing bandwagon by partnering with the NFL. Major beverage brands like Pepsi and Gatorade capitalized on the official partnership with sponsored filters.
- March: Public and searchable
Snapchat made its Wall Street debut on March 2 and the stock price rose by 41% on that first day, gaining traction with over $500 million invested by NBC Universal. To gain an edge over Facebook with its launch of Stories, camera filters, and disappearing messages, Snapchat made its stories searchable.
- April: Stepping up the filters game
It was a filter-centric month for Snapchat, beginning with a jab at its major competitor Instagram. After Instagram replicated Snap’s Stories feature with Instagram Stories, Snapchat rolled out a new filter mimicking Instagram’s UI. This was followed by an additional launch of 3D lenses enabling users to leverage new filters with the rear-facing camera.
- May: To infinity and beyond (except for ads)
After stepping up its filter game, Snapchat added a looping functionality for all videos. While it seems like another nice-to-have, loopable Snaps get more watch time and can help brands reinforce their message. As a last-ditch effort to boost revenue, Snapchat offered advertisers discount coupons for Snap ads.
- June: Find yourself
Snap acquired social map app Zenly, resulting in the creation of Snap Maps: a location-sharing feature that allows users to share their location with friends across the globe. Beyond that, users can submit posts to Our Story to make their content publicly visible.