Tonight Snapchat took upon an interesting marketing strategy to profit from its Our Stories collaborative live stream coverage of The American Music Awards. Samsung sponsored and branded a significant part of the content from the multimedia experience and thus pioneered a whole new advertising and monetizing strategy.
The AMA Our Stories in question mixes user-generated photos and videos from the event with a number of sponsored ones, carrying the distinctive tag “Powered by Samsung Galaxy”. This demonstrates a vast new array of profit possibilities for Snapchat by using a more natural, interesting and, above all, pleasant approach to presenting paid content. This type of presentation is a lot less intrusive and could prove to be significantly more successful than the standard ads, recently introduced within the app.
The Our Stories feature was first introduced in June as a way for you to collaboratively build and share a simulated experience of any event you happen to attend and make it readily available to other Snapchatters. This is achieved by allowing those at the specific geolocation to all submit photos and videos to a common story. The result is an interesting mash of different moments and impressions that after careful selection and arrangement by the Snapchat team form a unique picture of the event.
This was first employed during the last Electric Daisy Carnival festival in Las Vegas, which published one such story via its Snapchat account to all of its friends and followers. A number of other successful stories followed, like one for the World Cup and the Super Bowl and as a result Snapchat made a habit of showcasing interesting events from around the globe.
This however has mostly worked as quirk and cool promotional practice for the service. Now we are seeing the first real market use of the feature, with a sponsored story. Samsung`s content still seems more or less artificial within the story and stands out among user content, but the approach is definitely new and exciting and might hold a lot of potential.
Another interesting point to note with the new advertising form is that you are at no point forced to view the sponsored content. Unlike more traditional popup or overlay ads, that are just present, the stories behave quite naturally as an “opt-in” option. This may very well prove to be crucial for the success of the marketing scheme among the predominantly young user base of Snapchat.
As a whole there seems to be a clear and bright future of possibilities ahead of Snapchat as an advertising medium. This, however depends largely on the proper choices for content selection and quality execution of future event-driven stories from the application team.