Snapchat will let advertisers animate their Sponsored Filters
Snapchat is making one of its splashiest ad formats more attention-grabbing in an effort to grab more brand advertisers’ ad dollars.
Snapchat will now let advertisers animate their Sponsored Filters that people can use as overlays atop the photos and videos they share on the mobile app, the company announced on Wednesday. Dunkin’ Donuts will be the first brand to run a Sponsored Animated Filter in a campaign that will launch on Thursday.
During an initial testing phase, advertisers will only be able to buy Sponsored Animated Filters through Snapchat’s sales team and will only be able to target them at the country level. But next year, Snapchat plans to allow brands to buy these ads through its self-serve ad-buying tool and add audience-based targeting, which it only recently enabled for the static version of Sponsored Filters.
In spawning a new variety of its Sponsored Filter format, Snapchat is capitalizing on one of its biggest differentiators in advertisers’ minds: its unique ad formats.
Previously, Snapchat’s full-screen, vertical video Snap Ad format stood out from the competition, which largely traded in photo-and-text-based formats or traditional horizontal video ads. But now that Facebook, and particularly Instagram, have adopted their own versions of Snap Ads, Snapchat’s original format isn’t so unique.
However, its Sponsored Filter and Sponsored Lens formats — which the company categorizes as Creative Tools — remain largely untouched by rivals; Facebook has started to open up its version of Lenses to brands, but not as a sponsored format — nor has Instagram.
That point of difference continues to keep advertisers interested in Snapchat. The mobile app remains in a test-and-learn phase with many advertisers who largely still consider it a shiny new object. But while the luster of its Snap Ad format has faded in advertisers’ minds as its originality has been diluted by rivals, brands remain bullish about its Sponsored Filters and Sponsored Lenses as opportunities to stand out more than they can with a typical campaign on any other platform, according to one ad buyer.