Is the value of a Snapchat Ad really worth $750,000 per day?

This month Snapchat announced plans that they’re going to start charging brands the astronomical figure of $750,000 or about £500,000 for ads on the platform per day. For this amount of money brands get to show an ad to the social networks youthful and teenage audience…which will promptly disappear in 24 hours. So let’s break this down further. That means a brand would be paying $31,250 an hour, or $520 a minute or $9 a second. For me the figure that is most telling is how much brands are paying a second, as Snapchat ads, stories and messages only last up to 1-30 seconds. So if you’re posting an ad that lasts 30 seconds, you’ve just coughed up $270! Of course there’s no guarantee that the recipient will see out the whole ad, as they might just delete it, thus money wasted!

The other drawback of Snapchat’s ads, if the cost hasn’t already made you faint, is the fact you can’t target them to specific users. So it literally is a mass Snapchat message with no personalisation or anything. I mean for something generic like food this might be ok, but for something specific such as womens clothing, I personally don’t really want to see that (my days of wearing womens clothing are behind me). So the fact you aren’t able to target is a big issue. But I guess the cost is the reason for this. If Snapchat decides to release a targeted ads system, the cost I presume might be lower as you are hitting fewer users. Although it might actually be higher as you’re targeting more specifically!

The question to ask is why and how can Snapchat ask for so much from brands. One of the reasons is that it’s one of the fastest growing apps and social networks around with over 30 million users and this isn’t showing any signs of slowing down as more people sign up and brands look to exploit it. Also there’s a high value to get ads to people’s smartphones and through Snapchat’s ads brands can achieve just this. That’s because when you receive the snap, this is the only ad you see, as it’s not like a website page with loads of banner ads, it’s one ad that takes up your screen. Some might compare this to Instagram’s ad strategy too.

Is there actually any benefit in paying this amount of money? I mean is there actually any value in it, will you get a decent return or any if that. It’s quite hard to determine the ROI of these ads, and a lot will depend on the call to action. If it’s ‘opens’ then this isn’t really a great metric although clicks or website visits/sign ups might be a better determinant of success. Either way it appears Snapchat hasn’t really thought about this yet, nor really has any brand.

So only time will tell whether brands pay the handsome sum of $750,000 for an ad, or will Snapchat rethink this cost strategy. Thanks for reading and please do comment on your views of Snapchat’s ad cost. In the meantime, please do follow my blog and me on Twitter @DigitalStuart for more digital marketing and social media news.

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Ding Dong to Taco Bell’s Social Media Strategy

When you’re about to launch a ground breaking and unique app for your business, you want to create awareness of it don’t you? A great way to do this is obviously through the power of social media, one of the most influential sources of media there is in the modern era. I mean you’d be a fool not to take advantage of the opportunity to promote something like your new app. How would anyone know about it? How would they download it? So, promotion of it is pretty crucial you’d agree. However, not if you’re Taco Bell. When Taco Bell ‘launched’, and I use that term loosely,their new mobile payment and ordering app they decided to take the unique social media strategy of not promoting the app at all, but instead shut down and black out there entire social media network.

So when users went to Taco Bell’s Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts, they weren’t presented with the usually creative content, but instead blacked out screens, such as the one below on their Twitter.

taco bell

For me this is one of the oddest and most innovative social media strategy launches I’ve ever seen. The last thing you’d think about when launching a new app is to not promote it at all. On the contrary, you’d invest more time and money in promoting it. Maybe through promoted posts on all the main social media channels. It’s such a bold move!

However, Taco Bell is one of the most established brands in America, right up there with McDonalds and Starbucks, and with over 12 million followers across Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, this strategy isn’t as risky as you might think. When you have market clout like Taco Bell you can afford to do this, as all it takes is a small hint, like the hashtag they used ‘#OnlyInTheApp’ to your massive social media audience and the awareness is there!

You couldn’t imagine a small, lesser known fast food brand doing a similar strategy otherwise that would be social media suicide.

The strategy by Taco Bell was incredibly successful as 90% of the chains 6,000 US stores began accepting mobile orders and payments with 75% of all stores already having processed a mobile order 24 hours after the apps launch.

So overall, I feel that as far as social media strategies go, Taco Bell’s is certainly up there as one of the best and most unique I’ve ever seen. It’ll be interesting to see whether other brands do something similar in the future, I guess they might given the success Taco Bell had.

Thanks for reading, and please feel free to comment. For more social media and digital news, follow me @DigitalStuart.