- Snapchat axed its autoplay feature on Oct. 7, and since that time marketers have seen declining views for content published on the social media app, according to Digiday.
- Delmondo, a third-party Snapchat measurement tool, found an average decrease of 15% in view counts since autoplay — which automatically skips users' feeds to the next Snap story — was removed.
- Other Snapchat users reported even larger drop offs, with venture capitalist Hunter Walk tweeting a 33% loss in views on the app, and Alex Brooks tweeting a 35-40% loss for one of his brands, per Digiday.
Slipping views on Snapchat may sound bad to some marketers, but the reality is that auto advance was never an ideal format for reaching consumers to begin with, essentially forcing ad spots to automatically interrupt users' story feeds. The feature was in fact removed partially due to backlash, so marketers should instead focus on building quality campaigns that people will voluntarily opt into and engage with on the app, as well as utilize other distinct Snapchat tools like video filters and geotags.
Raw viewership data also shouldn't be the endgame when running a campaign: Digiday reports that marketers aren’t altering strategies for the most part despite lower views, with one anonymous e-tailer telling the publication its brand is still seeing the same levels of engagement.
“Do we want to show our clients high view counts? Sure," Kevin Del Rosario, associate director of social media for agency Huge, told Digiday. "But we’d much rather show them a community of brand advocates that really care about and choose our brand and ultimately drive business goals,”
The removal of autoplay suggests Snap Inc., Snapchat's parent company, is taking marketing seriously and wants to ensure a quality user experience. It is also potentially emulative of Facebook's pay-for-play model for marketers. The development shouldn't be surprising either, as Snap Inc., Snapchat’s parent company, is looking to boost its internal revenue in advance of an expected IPO in March.