Snapchat’s Unskippable Ads Have Arrived

Deadpool 2 is One of the First Ads to Launch

Snapchat’s 6 second unskippable commercial-like ads, announced last month, have started popping up in the middle of Discover shows produced by companies like Buzzfeed, Disney, NBCUniversal, and Viacom. Samsung, Snapple, STX Entertainment, and Warner Bros are among the first brands to air unskippable ads.

Image Courtesy of AdAge

One of the first unskippable ads to premiere is a “Deadpool 2” spot, created in partnership with 20th Century Fox, which includes an exclusive AR lens featuring the “Merc with a Mouth” dancing to Diplo.

Snapchat’s reluctance to force ads on its users has had its fair share of consequences. Because users were able to skip ads of any length immediately, average ad view times of two seconds or less were becoming commonplace. This behavior deterred brands from purchasing ad placements and caused Snap’s revenue to sink.

The 6 second ads may be somewhat of an unwelcome surprise to users used to skipping through branded content but the short ad format may become the revenue building ad model Snapchat needs to survive.

Other platforms have started to see the benefits of the six second ad format and have begun offering the placements to marketers. For example, Youtube expanded their options for advertisers last month by introducing TrueView for Reach ad units which allow users to skip ads after five seconds. The video site has also had unskippable 6 second bumper ads since 2016

Snapchat's six second unskippable ads are here. Read on for a glimpse at some of them and find out what they might mean for marketing. Click To Tweet

Implications for Content Marketers

Snapchat’s six second unskippable ad unit has promising outlooks for content marketers. Six second ads are short enough not to be annoying yet just long enough to convey an impactful message which may encourage users to click through; resulting in higher click rates.

However, short ads must have a strong creative element to work. Creating a fun, exciting, clickable ad in six seconds or less is harder than it looks but it’s not impossible. Dozens of brands have gotten exceptionally good at telling stories in limited time frames. Check out some of the best below:

  • Burn Energy Drink

  • Corona Extra

  • Hefty Brands


In an ultra-competitive digital marketing space, it’s not enough to simply be ‘okay’ anymore. Marketing materials demand humor, emotion, action and above all else; authenticity. When it comes to mandatory ads, the stakes are even higher.

People are subjected to hundreds of ads every day. More often than not, they’ll see your ad more than once. If your ad is boring then annoyance will set in. At best, your audience won’t click on your ad. At worst, they’ll avoid your brand like the plague.

Spending more time in the brainstorming stage will do wonders for your marketing strategy and staying current on trends, memes, and/or pop culture will help you forge long lasting connections with your audience. Storytelling is possible in short form and as more companies adopt six second or less ad models, we’d be wise to start adopting this technique.

Genevieve Dietz Dietz is a staff writer for She holds a Bachelor's degree in writing and linguistics from Georgia Southern University and writes extensively in both creative and technical writing fields.

Genevieve has been involved in marketing for three years and has experience creating and honing social media and editorial strategies for various organizations including Farmer Mac (Federal Agricultural Mortgage Corporation) and Wraparound South Literary Magazine.

She has written over 50 content marketing related articles for Relevance and her fiction can be seen in volume four of Polychrome Ink Literary Magazine. She is based out of Washington DC and enjoys film, theatre, and impactful art that deviates from the norm.

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