Staff Reporters
May 3, 2023

Snap announces new ad tools after weak Q1 earnings

Snap unwraps a bevy of new ad tools, including content pacts with the 2024 Paris Olympics and Paralympic Games, and the availability of ads in Spotlight user-generated content at the IAB NewFronts in New York.

Snap announces new ad tools after weak Q1 earnings

After Snap’s disappointing 7% year-over-year drop in revenue thanks to dwindling ad spend, despite a 15% year-over-year increase in Snapchat users to 383 million, the company made a pitch to advertisers at IAB’s NewFronts to introduce new ad products that will help brands get more exposure.

Rob Wilk, Snap's new president of Americas along with CCO Colleen DeCourcy, spoke about a test that allows Snap partners to leverage its new AI feature, My AI, and place sponsored links in front of users. While it’s still early days, Snap says My AI will potentially deliver more relevant content and experiences across the app — by suggesting Lenses, Places from Snap Map and, soon, will be able to send a generative Snap back to Snapchat+ subscribers in addition to having text-based conversations with users.

Recognising that the broader social app ecosystem is not gaining from the advertising rebound that benefitted Meta's Q1 earnings, Snap will also make space for new ad slots, and brands will have the option to reserve the first video ad seen in Friend Stories and the ability to advertise within its TikTok-like Spotlight feature. Ads within Spotlight content will be automatic placement that advertisers can manage from within the Snapchat Ads Manager.

Advertisers were assured that Spotlight content will be moderated before it reaches a large audience, thereby reducing the chance that ads appear next to misinformation, hate speech, or other potentially harmful and brand-unsafe content. 

Additionally, the company has new content pacts with NBCUniversal that will bring new custom content from the 2024 Paris Olympics and the FIFA Women’s World Cup to Snap users. The content will be delivered by a "Snap Stars" roster in Paris via daily Stories, Spotlight and AR content from both tournaments and experiential events. 

“I’m excited about today’s announcements which provide our advertising partners with greater product enhancements that will have a material impact on reaching Snapchatters. Our platform is about real relationships and these new features will give brands more opportunities than ever, to reach the 7.5 million Australians who are a part of the Snapchat community,” said Snap’s APAC president, Ajit Mohan.

"First Story," a new takeover offering that allows advertisers to reserve the first Snap Ad (the video ad slot between Friend Stories), that users would see has also been rolled out. The company compared the product, which it said was in high demand, to existing offerings like First Commercial and First Lens, which also let advertisers reserve the first spot in other parts of Snapchat's app. The potential of being first in Friend Stories means a marketer is more likely to reach users before they exit. 

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