Advertising on Snapchat: How Do You Do It and Does It Work?


Saying that Snapchat has become popular over the past few years would be an understatement! The app has garnered more than 290 million users since it was first released in 2011, and its growth shows no signs of slowing down. 

That’s why it’s not surprising that so many businesses have started advertising on Snapchat, with one report suggesting that companies are spending over $150,000 per day on the platform alone. 

The fact is, starting your latest advertising strategy on digital media can be difficult for any business owner. There are so many different platforms to choose from, and each one has its strengths and weaknesses. 

Here’s an introduction to Snapchat video ads that will help you understand this marketing approach and how to implement it.

What is Snapchat Advertising?

A Snapchat ad is a 10-second full-screen vertical video that appears while watching friends’ stories. The Snapchat user can swipe up to open the advertisement, including links to websites, longer videos, articles, or apps. 

This is similar to an Instagram story advertisement, with the main difference being that users can self-serve their ads and advertise as cheaply as $5 per day.

Advertising on Snapchat is easy! With just a swipe of the finger, anyone can browse through pictures and videos to find your company’s story. And if they find something that interests them, all they need to do is tap it!

Snapchat offers business owners a variety of advertising options that fit into their daily schedules. Advertisers can buy ads to post in Snapchat’s Discover section, including stories from publishers like CNN and BuzzFeed. 

The Snapchat app also allows users to watch sponsored Stories from companies. These ad units appear as story cards similar to Snapchat’s posted by friends, meaning users may engage with them more than traditional 30-second video ads or banner images. 

Who Should Advertise on Snapchat

If you’re looking for ways to reach a younger crowd, it’s hard to beat social media channels like Snapchat. About 76% of millennials and Gen Z use Snapchat every day, and they spend an average of 30 minutes on the app every day. Plus, there are some major benefits of using Snapchat ads as part of your marketing strategy: you can reach a previously-untapped audience and target your ads with pinpoint accuracy. Snapchat is biased towards brands that sell items in the form of advertisements.

However, Snapchat advertising does have some restrictions that might turn off certain brands. For example, you can only advertise if your company has been around for at least six months. Additionally, Snapchat video ad specs are slightly different from other platforms—for example, each snap can only be 10 seconds long. 

What Metrics Do Advertisers Look At

The Snapchat video ad specs have been designed to help businesses better understand their metrics. Snapchat uses a mix of standard metrics, such as CPM (cost per thousand) impressions, with some specific to their platform, such as video completion rate (how many users watched more than 3 seconds of your video). 

However, It’s important to note that Snapchat measures its views differently from other social platforms. On Snapchat, an impression occurs when someone sees your ad for one second or longer; if they watch for three seconds or longer, it counts as a view. 

This also means that you need to make sure your ads are shorter than 10 seconds to get full value out of them.

How Much Does It Cost?

Snap ads can cost as little as $0.05 per view. That’s a steal when you compare it to Facebook or Instagram, where competition levels are higher and costs have been driven up over time.

We won’t recommend spending your entire marketing budget on Snapchat ads, but it may be something worth exploring in 2022. If you decide to run Snapchat ads, here are some quick specs that will help you get started: 

  • The minimum length for a Snap ad is 10 seconds. 
  • The maximum length for a Snap ad is 30 seconds. 
  • Videos should be recorded in portrait.
  • Videos should include sound. 
  • Your video file size should not exceed 4 MB (3 MB for Discover).
  • Your video resolution should be at least 720p (1280 x 720).
  • Your video frame rate should be at least 24 fps (30 fps for Discover).

There is no limit to how many times you can attempt to upload an ad before it gets approved. Once approved, Snapchat will approve your ad within two business days.

Snapchat Ad Specifications:

  • File type: mp4, mov .jpg, or png
  • Length: 3–180 seconds
  • Aspect ad ratio: 9:16
  • Resolution: 1080 px x 1920 px
  • Brand name: 25 characters (including spaces)
  • Attachments: long-form video, AR Lens, app or Website.
  • Headline: Up to 34 characters ( including spaces)
  • Call to action: you can add CTA text. Snapchat will apply the visual and place the CTA on the ad.

Tips and Tricks to Snapchat Advertising Success

Snapchat video ad specs are a hot topic in advertising circles, as many brands consider whether they should create Snapchat video ads. If you’re thinking about creating your own, here are a few tips to help you along 

  • To make sure that your video ads stand out from other content on Snapchat, always use creativity that has been shot vertically so it fits with how people will be using their phones when watching it.
  • Also include an element of motion with text that moves across it or something within the shot’s frame. This is a way to draw attention to it and add some interest. 
  • Remember to keep things short—Snapchat users are notoriously impatient—and consider adding sound to your ad if you want viewers to watch until the end; they’re much more likely to do so if there’s sound accompanying them. 

If you want to take advantage of Snapchat’s Geofilters, remember that brands can only create their filters for special events and holidays—you can’t simply create one for every day. 

If you choose to create a filter for your brand, think about what makes it unique and interesting enough to share with others. 

Geofilters have become such a popular part of Snapchat advertising because they encourage interaction between brands and customers in ways no other form of advertising does.

Tips and Tricks to Advertising Success

The popularity of social media continues to grow, leaving businesses no other choice but to implement it into their daily routine. 

With so many options available, it’s difficult to pick which one will work best for your business; with different audiences responding differently to different platforms, it’s difficult to determine what is best. 

You must do your research before you start throwing your advertising dollars around. Most advertisers haven’t thought about advertising on Snapchat because they think it isn’t sophisticated enough. 

However, understanding how a youth culture operates and looks at marketing becomes infinitely easier to market. If you understand what they want to see, you’re set to create ads that will captivate your audiences across all social media.

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