Snapchat took a major step in building out its ad business on Monday as it launched its first ad partner program and its first official ad API. Together, they allow third-party ad networks to create and serve ads on Snapchat, helping the hot messaging app to score more ad revenue. Also, Snapchat says it will soon start showing ads between stories from friends for the first time. Previously, Snapchat ads have only appeared in the media section of Snapchat, i.e., Discover channels and Live Stories. Initial launch partners for this new ad unit include Hollister, P&G, Verizon, and Warner Brothers.
Why Brands Should Care
With the API and some newly-added measurement tools, Snapchat’s growing ad business seems to be catching up to its rapid growth. According to eMarketer, Snapchat is expected to expand its user base by 27.2% this year, surpassing its rivals such as Twitter and Pinterest. Nearly one in five Americans will be on Snapchat by the end of the year. For brands, now is the time to consider getting on Snapchat to reach its young-skewing users (about half of its users are below 25) via a variety of means, including purchasing Discover ads, custom selfie filters, or branded Geofilters, as well as sponsoring events that Snapchat covers in Live Stories.