Snapchat prioritises users over publishers in latest update

Sarah Homewood
By Sarah Homewood | 11 October 2016

Snapchat has updated its offering, prioritising users' content over that of publishers which are part of the social media player's Discover platform.

The photo sharing business launched Discover in 2015, with 10 publishing partners coming on board as a way to get their content across in a new format to the lucrative millennial audience.

Now, Snapchat has revealed that Discover partners such as BuzzFeed, Cosmopolitan and Vice will be losing their prime real estate at the top of the Snapchat Stories feed and instead will appear after user content.

The move feels similar to the one made by Facebook some months ago, when it tweaked its algorithm to prioritise user content over that of publishers.

As part of the news, Snapchat also revealed that ads will appear following the completion of user Stories, as well as in between user Stories within playlists and after completion of a final Story in a playlist.

Jill Sherman, head of social at DigitasLBi told AdAge that publishers may feel “jilted” in the short term, but this move may actually draw higher engagement in the long run.

“Eventually they'll recognise that people spending more time in the Snapchat app is key to their success, too. If users spend less time in Snapchat because the user experience is flawed, or they aren't seeing what's important to them, all parties lose."

Currently publishers make money from Discover by selling ads amid their videos and articles and they split revenue with Snapchat.

Advertisers aren't said to be concerned about the move yet, with an anonymous source telling AdAge: “If the redesign helps ensure ad delivery, that's fine. If it changes how impressions are delivered, then we'd need to monitor our investment to ensure we're getting them.”

This update will also be experienced by select Android users, with the new offering rolling out across Andriod and iOS soon.

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