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Spotlight On: Snapchat’s Increasing Social Media Power

Those in marketing and business who wished Snapchat was a passing fad, lest they need to understand and utilize another social network have likely given up hope.

Last week, Snapchat announced users were viewing 10 billion videos… a day. That is more than Facebook’s last public tally for daily views, but be sure they will be announcing the updated figures any day now in this highly contested battle of consumer attention.

By now, it’s clear that Snapchat has grown way beyond its initial concept, ephemeral messaging, which was never going to drive widespread adoption and monetization. Now, brands, individual and celebrities alike create stories that have a longer shelf life and allow people to view multiple times.

Beyond the recent impressive numbers, what else do marketers need to know about this impressive startup? Below is our spotlight on Snapchat.

  • Snapchat, founded in 2011, has raised over $1.3 billion in funding and is currently valued at $16 billion (Crunchbase, Vanity Fair).
  • It is the most popular social network for teens, according to a Piper Jaffray report. Instagram is second and Twitter and Facebook follow behind (Mashable).
  • Its popularity is often traced to putting value on videos, photos and emojis over long strings of text, and the ability to use filters. The service also uses a points system that rewards people who spend more time on the service. Buzzfeed writer Ben Rosen penned a great article as sociological study that explained the mentality behind the service (Buzzfeed)
  • The app and its team are not without flaws. A widely panned 4/20 (the pot smoker’s holiday) celebration of Bob Marley allowed Snapchat users to put on a filter on their faces that superimposed dreadlocks and effectively created a blackface effect (Wired).
  • After some initial reluctance, brands have flocked to the service. Some of the best brands to follow can be found in recent Shorty nominees (Shorty Awards).


  • Snapchat is not going away; in fact, the next generation of consumers prefer it to other forms of social media
  • It’s not just about ephemeral messages anymore – brands are using it to tell real intricate stories to their followers
  • Metrics are still minimal and inconclusive, but we expect that to change some time soon
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