Snapchat is a social media platform created in 2011 by students of Stanford University that specializes in video sharing. Users send pictures and 10 second (or less) videos to one another and once the message is viewed, it disappears (usually).
It used to be reserved to the realm of millennials and was really just a source of entertainment. However, in the past couple years as social media marketing gains traction a lot of companies have begun using it to reach their customers and new leads.
When it began, videos had one set length and disappeared after every view. Today, users can add lenses or special effects to their videos and choose to broadcast them for a day to all of their friends instead of sending the videos directly and having them disappear after one view. But, what does the future have in store for this nifty social media platform?
To answer that question we asked a group of industry experts…
What’s The Future Of Snapchat?
Here’s what they had to say…
Malcolm J. Gray, Social Media Manager at Live Nation
“Now that Snap has gone public, it obviously has to grow and diversify. The first priority for Snapchat should be a focus on fully developing its ad platform. It has the data, now it’s time to really put it to use. Instagram just announced that it now has 200 million daily users for its stories feature, which is a direct competitor of Snapchat’s platform, which currently only registers 158 million daily users. In 5 years, I plan on seeing Snapchat toting a robust ad platform for advertisers of all sizes and budgets in addition to a higher number of original content channels.”
Huseyin Aksu, CEO & Co-founder of Fantasy Couch
“Snapchat is not going anywhere. It is the preferred social media platform for people 34 years old and younger, or you can call them cool kids. Facebook and Instagram are constantly stealing features from Snapchat and they are actually working quite well, especially for brands. IG Stories gets us, and brands we work with, over 10 times the amount of views as Snapchat. Snapchat will be here 5 years later, but they are going to have to come up with new features that Zuckerberg can’t easily steal, or else they won’t be the preferred platform for companies and advertisers.”
Jess Bahr, Director, Paid Media at Glow Digital Agency
“In 5 years Snap, Inc will be a VR company that looks nothing like the Snapchat we know today.”
Alejandro Rioja, CEO at Flux Ventures & The Influencer Young Slacker on Snapchat
“Snapchat is facing serious issues with the introduction of Instagram Stories and Facebook Stories as content creators, influencers and consumers are shifting towards the other platforms due to their bigger reach. With this in mind, Snapchat has already started their shift from an entirely media platform to a “camera company” where they have started to produce their own wearables (Spectacles). In the next 5 years, I expect to see Snapchat do a bigger push in consumer products while still developing their advertising business with better targeting tools for advertisers. For instance, they will leverage the biometric data they are getting from Snap filters and use machine learning to deliver ads to their users at the right time and at the right emotional state.”
Priscilla Vento, Founder & CEO of 30 Miles North
“I believe Snap is headed into the world of music and paid video content as iTunes. Snap Stories is set up in a way where it can easily turn into a music discovery platform with in-app music and video (Over-the-top movie/television) purchasing.”
Elizabeth Giorgi, CEO of Mighteor
“Brands are going to have to move to the model of turning their people into Snapchat celebrities in the future in order to capture long-term community growth. Brands should start to think of their employees and people as characters in their story they can tell to the community to increase engagement and foster a relationship with their customers.”
Phil Hedayatnia, Co-Founder & CEO of Solver Labs
“5 years from today, Snapchat will be not just a camera company, but a news and media company as well. User-created content is the future of advertising; everyone wants to get noticed, everyone wants to be known. Snapchat’s key market advantage over Facebook and other platforms boils down to two things: realtime content and authenticity. Facebook may have a larger userbase, but Snapchat’s userbase is more committed to the product because while all social media is in some way a highlight reel, Snapchat feeds are less artificial. Thus, look to Musical.ly as an example of how Snapchat might be able to adjust its model – users could create content in response to advertisers’ prompts, embedding advertisers’ narratives in more human stories.”
Casey Tibbs , Owner & Founder of Image Squared Marketing
“With such a young user base and steadily growing popularity, Snapchat is poised to remain relevant for years to come. The deciding factor will be how the platform chooses to mature along with its users, maintaining relevancy as their behaviors and interests change. If Snapchat succeeds, agencies and brands in primarily mature markets such as mine will be able to better utilize this ad platform. Until that happens, however, our marketing dollars are better spent elsewhere.”
Linda Passante, CEO & Founder of The Halo Group
“With geotags, filters and lenses, Snapchat has already championed the world of augmented reality. In 5 years, Snapchat will undoubtedly join the world of virtual reality. Snapchat will be able to transpose us into the world of friends, families and celebrities, and allow for our peers to enter ours. Snapchat users will be able to have a more immersive experience. This is great news for advertisers who will be able to marry virtual reality to their filters and geotags. Toyota will create a filter that allows users to test drive their new model and Expedia can use a geotag to take its users on a trip to South East Asia. With virtual reality, possibilities for Snapchat are absolutely endless.”
Lee Broughton, Founder of The Geo Factory
“Now Snap Inc has gone public with their IPO, Snapchat will now have the capability to grow rapidly. This will allow Snap inc to acquire more innovative technologies which they can integrate into the app to improve the consumer experience. Look for acquisitions in the Augmented reality, Mobile Payments and in particular e-commerce space to allow easier integration for business as Snapchat expands into more than a social media app but a lifestyle company in the next 5 years. This is evident with the recent release of snapchat spectacles proving that Snap Inc will continue to experiment and offer consumers more than just digital products but hardware devices too.”