The Social Media Forecast

Snapchat has recently announced its 2017 Q2 results and some disappointing figures have prompted some introspection about the state the big Social Media brands entering the second half of the year.

While Snapchat was able to report growth in all the important areas – revenue up $72 million from Q2 2016 and DAU (Daily Active Users) up 7.3 million – this was still well below their forecasts for the period, and the price of stock dropped 16% in response.

It’s in Snapchat Chief Executive Evan Speigel’s comments about the social platform’s rivals that the seeds of this discussion are to be found: he drew attention to Snapchat’s innovation as its strength. Its new products and offerings are what allow Snapchat to compete with the “giant companies” which, though they went unnamed in the earnings call, clearly represent Facebook, Instagram and other established Social titans.

This boast certainly rings true if you look at the recent history of updates across the different Social Media platforms: the ‘Stories’ function was pioneered on Snapchat and rapidly spread to Facebook, Whatsapp and Instagram as it became popular with users. Facebook’s own attempts to create new products for its audience has been more faltering. Its teen-targeted ‘Lifestage’ video app was withdrawn after only a year spent trying to court Snapchat’s young user base.

If Snapchat isn’t making all the money it could hope for, it’s certainly setting the agenda for change in the Social Media space. If we look at what they have in the pipeline as a guide to what marketers can expect from Social across the board, the message is “Data is king”. Snapchat’s working on tools for tracking the effectiveness of ads on the platform, making ROI and sales lift into concrete, measurable statistics.

This is likely to lead to improved ad tracking across the board, which can only be good news for marketers. This means we can expect better targeting for adverts and more transparent pricing in the short term, and in the mid to long term this data could be translated into new and more effective ad formats.

Illuminate’s core values are transparency and Return on Investment, so we welcome this news avidly. To find out how Illuminate can help you, be it with Social, Native or across the digital sphere, get in touch today.