- Snapchat officially opened its API to third-party partners for programmatic ad sales according to Ad Age.
- The API includes targeting via email matching with more options to come, and other tools such as performance visualization dashboards and the ability to apply real-time data. The API also allows for A/B testing of ads on the app.
- McDonald's, Unilever, Nissan and Gatorade are reportedly among the first to leverage programmatic buying on Snapchat.
Snapchat’s API is one more move toward making the app more marketer-friendly. After having an almost antagonistic approach to marketers on the app, going so far as making statements about protecting its users from “creepy” ads, Snapchat has reversed course this year by offering targeting and measurement options that marketers have come to expect when advertising on social media platforms.
With Snapchat's popularity among younger consumers continuing to grow, the ability to automate how ads are purchased at scale and leverage real-time data is likely to see strong demand from marketers.
The programmatic play puts Snapchat more squarely in the same league as Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and others in terms of advertising technology.
The API expansion also plays into an IPO strategy laid out for Marketing Dive by Corbett Drummey, CEO of Popular Pays, who said: “Snapchat’s UX has always felt light on settings/tutorials/analytics, and for its early users, that’s been part of the appeal. If Snapchat is eyeing a potential IPO anytime soon, it makes sense that they’d be looking to beef up and solidify their revenue streams.”
Snapchat's parent company Snap Inc. is preparing for an IPO worth possibly north of $25 billion, according to the Wall Street Journal.