Snapchat: Social Media Catalogue of the Future
Snapchat: Social Media Catalogue of the Future

Despite all the setbacks, this platform might still pull out ahead.

A brand with a Snapchat presence should be concerned. With a wonky new app redesign, subsequent stock dip and reported user distaste of disruptive ads, there’s a lot to be concerned about for this property. It is possible, however, that this isn’t the death rattle for Snapchat, but the opportunity for a pivot – marking a new dawn for the ephemeral social media outlet. A dawn of the full integration between social media’s end user and the point of sale: the perfectly tailored purchasing experience.

In August of this year, the U.S. Patent Office offered Snap Inc. a patent entitled “Determining the Mood for a Group.” The title is as it sounds — Snap now has the patent rights to software that uses your selfies, group shots, messages or videos to categorize your mood, but the technology goes way beyond reading your emotions.

As discussed in their patent registry, a client could have a contract with Snap Inc. to use this technology at an event. Emotion metrics and demographic data are then reported back to the client about those using their Snapchat at this concert or party. Say you’re a client with this service and your event, as reported by Snapchat’s emotion reader, was starting to flop. Just by using this data, you could try to pivot to get more attendee buy-in. A next step could be messaging the group of users reporting negative emotions (although the patent is unclear if this technology is available yet.)

This could just go beyond the localized party or event if the tech was there. What if a brand bought the rights to all “sad” emotions snapped from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. local time? Then that brand could send to those negative emoters suggestions to make them feel better, i.e., buying their product. That technology is already in the cards too, with the integration of the point-of-sale and production location features within the app.



As of last week, Snapchat announced a new partnership with Amazon in the works. For a few years now, Amazon users have been able to scan barcodes of products to search within the existing Amazon app. Now users don’t even need to leave Snapchat to scan their barcode. They don’t even don’t need a barcode. Just take a picture, and boom, Amazon finds your item. Or the closest proxy to what you took a picture of.

While this feature isn’t in the latest update, with no rollout date announced, point-of-sale purchasing is creeping closer and closer to living within Snapchat for every advertiser. This past week Snapchat announced the Collection Ads, the first shoppable Snapchat advertisements, for their brand partners. This feature has lived within brand rivals like Facebook and Instagram for quite some time – a sponsored picture post with a paid redirect to your commerce site. However, that additional couple of steps kills clickthrough rate for securing that sale. But Snapchat’s got a solution for that.

Snapchat partnered with Adidas to sell a Snapchat-exclusive prerelease of its Falcon Sneaker. A content collection debuting the sneaker, unannounced of course, allowed those watching the “episode” to swipe up at any point and purchase the sneaker via an in-Snapchat e-commerce portal. All of the sneakers sold out in 6 hours with a 100 percent clickthrough rate.

From Adweek:

This partnership with Snapchat was all about coming closer to our consumer and bringing a unique brand experience to one of the platforms that they value the most,” said Chris Murphy, senior director, digital activation, North America at Adidas. “Going into this collaboration, we wanted to bridge the gap between content and commerce.

Bridging the gap between content and commerce, what some are dubbing social commerce, is precisely where Snapchat is positioning itself. The 13- to 24-year-old women who purchased the Falcon Sneaker may not remember the days of the mailed JCPenney catalogue, but what they’re participating in is its cooler, more targeted, content-driven sister. While this won’t be the shopping portal for anyone older than the Millennial generation, brands that want to curate their younger fans should take notice of what Snapchat is doing here to assess if working in this space is a good bet.

In short, if Snapchat goes where we think it’s going, this Seth Godin quote sums it up: “You can use social media to turn strangers into friends, friends into customers and customers into salespeople.” This platform might be exactly where you want your brand to be.

Get YDP in your email as soon as it's published.