How Snapchat Can Boost Your Holiday Marketing Strategy
Recognizing the tremendous importance of the holiday season to most advertisers, Snapchat has come up with a new option which is intended to help brands share their stories prior to the holiday season. This new option will allow brands and advertisers to run commercials which feature video ads lasting as long as three minutes.
Users who are viewing these ads will have the ability to opt out after the first six seconds have played, but for those messages which they find genuinely interesting and engaging, they can continue to watch the entire ad. This is another attempt in Snapchat’s continuing efforts to secure a greater share of the video advertising market.
It is thought that the new option will give advertisers an opportunity to use more of their existing video assets, running them at their full length, rather than having to trim them down to a few seconds. The end result is expected to be more seamless cross promotion and greater engagement with users who are generally interested in whatever is being advertised.
According to Snapchat, the platform is committed to supporting long-form video ad formats which have a high impact on users, and these extended play commercials represent a terrific option for online video and television buyers. As the holidays approach, this option provides a powerful new format for reaching millennial audiences and Generation Z users through Snapchat’s premium Discover content.
The option was developed in response to recent research which examined buyer behavior trends among these younger demographics, in terms of how they make purchases, and how brands are able to connect with them.
Connecting with millennials and Generation Z users
Between them, millennials and Generation Z users have a combined $1 trillion in total spending power, and mobile purchases are projected to be responsible for almost 50% of all commerce conducted in the U.S. during the holiday season. It is estimated that Black Friday will see at least 64% of Snapchat users beginning or continuing their holiday shopping, and at least 20% of all these individuals will be using their mobile devices to carry out that shopping.
Generation Z users alone are expected to make purchases valued at upwards of $250 between Black Friday and Cyber Monday. This represents a noteworthy shift in shopping behaviors, and it’s expected that these behaviors will not only continue, but will probably be enhanced in future years. All advertisers and brands are aware of the purchasing power of these two younger generations, and that’s why so much attention has been focused on them. However, gaining their attention has proved to be a difficult not to crack, and many advertisers have found themselves frustrated by either being only somewhat successful, or outright failing in the attempt.
Research on younger demographics
During the last holiday season, extensive research was conducted into the purchasing habits of millennials and Generation Z users, and a number of important findings were arrived at. First of all, it was determined that Snapchat users are much more interested in omni-channel experiences which they can seamlessly navigate.
Compared to individuals who do not use Snapchat, at least 1-1/2 times more platform users do research online, prior to committing to an in-store purchase. It was also found that 2-1/2 times more individuals will conduct their research in stores before buying online, and that 1-1/2 times more people will shop online, and then pick up their goods in a physical storefront.
Throughout the buying journey from beginning to end, a great many Snapchat users make use of the platform to consult family and friends. A full 39% of Snapchat users send various Snaps to friends and family for the purpose of gauging their opinions, and another 35% are involved with using Snaps while they browse.
A further 35% send Snaps to family and friends relative to the products they are thinking about buying, and ask them for their feedback about the particular product. Research has shown that Snapchat is the number one platform for carrying on conversations during the shopping experience and in the immediate aftermath.
While engaged in the process of shopping, Snapchat users are actually logged on at a 35% higher rate than Twitter users, and 46% more than Instagram users. They are also 58% more likely to be logged on than are Facebook users, and a whopping 137% more than users of the YouTube platform. Having made a purchase, a full 65% of all Snapchat users would then share some kind of post, 46% will send a Snap to brands whom they have purchased from, and another 45% will either mention or tag a brand which they have just made a purchase from.
In terms of driving online to off-line sales, it was found that the in-store return on ad spend conducted online, was seven times greater than the original investment. When push notifications were issued to shoppers to redeem an offer, a full 14% responded and took advantage of that offer, so the online notifications can be considered highly effective.
Usefulness of smart phones
No one questions the importance of smartphones in making holiday season purchases. Virtually all advertisers and brands are aware of the fact that smartphones are one of the most useful sources of information for gathering and sharing data during the shopping and purchasing process. What this means is that there is a tremendous opportunity to reach not only the younger demographics, but all users who carry a smartphone, and who use it to supply information prior to making a purchase.
The real trick, and the challenge for advertisers and brands, is to somehow appeal to all these smartphone users, and to get them to pay attention to its own advertisements. Whether this be through straight product videos, Stories, or any number of creative posts and videos, it’s essential to capture the attention of smartphone users, so that your brand will be remembered at the time of purchasing, and so your brand stays in the mind of the purchaser.