A Primer on Snapchat Analytics

One of the biggest roadblocks to the widespread adoption of Snapchat by marketers today is the lack of analytics tools. This makes entry on the platform that much more difficult for the people who make the decisions to spend money on campaigns.

I compare this to where Instagram was just a few years ago (and in many ways still is today). Mobile-first with few real “brand tools” that marketers have come to use regularly on Facebook and Twitter.

We built our own Snapchat analytics tool for Delmondo clients internally and we’ve seen some trends in viewership that are pretty interesting. From stories to snaps to discover’s multi-faceted storytelling modules – we’ve been spending a lot of time analyzing the behaviors and performance of the various angles of Snapchat.

We thought we’d share some of our learnings so far that might give some better insight into how brands, publishers and influencers can think about measuring their Snapchat metrics and start setting smarter KPI’s.

Snapchat Story Metrics

Stories are the heart of the Snapchat creative these days, giving users the ability to mix personal and public broadcasting of life experiences.

Here are some examples of metrics that you can look at

  • Total Snaps Posted – How many snaps did the account create over the past time period? (Time period could be just 24 hours, or week over week, month over month)
  • Completion Percentage – How many people have actually viewed a story all the way through?
  • Time Viewed – How long did people watch your content?
  • Average Views per Snap – (total views)/(total snaps sent).
  • Snapchat Score – Your Snapchat “score” is the sum of the number of Snaps you have sent and received. Your score is displayed on the profile screen next to your username (as defined by Snapchat).

Two Types of Snapchat Stories

Snapblasts are when a snapper sends a burst of posts out, stringing multiple videos, photos, images and drawings together in a short period of time (generally under an hour). These types of stories are meant to be consumed at once and tell their own unique story.

See Mark Kaye’s Talkin’ Snap from a campaign we did with JBL below or this cool Snapchat Goldeneye example from EmGarber, Shonduras, and Stuart_Edge to see examples of Snapblasts in action.

“Spread out stories” (as compared to Snapblasts) simply mean stories posted over a complete 24 hour window. Snapchat will bump a user’s most recent posts in the stories section, picking up from where the user last left off when they opened a story.

For stories, given their linear nature, we think completion percentage and time watched are the most effective metrics for marketers today. Snapchat is an intent-driven platform. Unlike Facebook, Twitter or even Instagram, Snapchat content is only served on-demand.

Users have to hold down their finger, wait a second or two for content to load up and then have to keep their finger down the entire time. If you’re the brand serving up that content or that experience, these users are consuming it willingly.

What Now?

This is all still very new. These metrics might all change by the time you read this article. There are definitely limitations. For example, Snapchat doesn’t disclose the time spent in individual snaps. By the same token, there are certain variables of Snapchat that don’t change and can be calculated. For example, videos and photos could be viewed a maximum of ten seconds, or viewed a minimum of one second because there’s no passive loading of content.

No matter where you spend your time marketing, you still need to determine your objectives before you invest time in any new channel. So just because the evidence needed to prove Snapchat’s value isn’t blatantly available doesn’t mean that you should cast off the platform or wait around for someone to hold your hand. Get in there and start experimenting!

A version of this article originally appeared on Delmondo.

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