Mobile App Strategy

Snapchat & the Power of Putting Data in Context for Marketers & Advertisers

Lexi Sydow

Snapchat’s latest usage metrics show how analyzing the right data in the right way can reveal powerful audience insights

In any kind of marketing, it’s easy to fall prey to assumptions — including assumptions about what your audience wants, how it behaves and even what demographics define it. At the most fundamental level, this is why you need data to counterbalance your gut reaction.

This principle is particularly true in mobile marketing where there’s a wealth of highly specific and targeted information to check your assumptions against. For marketers and advertisers, the granularity of data is one of the most powerful aspects of working in the mobile industry, but gathering information is only a first step. Next, you need to zero in on the numbers that are the most useful and leverage them judiciously, and in doing so you’ll likely uncover some valuable marketing insights that weren’t more immediately obvious.

As an example of data yielding some deeper truths about a particular app, we looked at some recent Snapchat audience metrics. While the data itself is specific to Snapchat, there are some broader lessons to be learned here that are relevant to anyone considering their user acquisition and advertising efforts.

When it comes to engagement, context matters

When you look closely at Snapchat’s engagement data, a few assumption-worthy data points hold up, like its users tend also to use Facebook, Messenger and Instagram. But when you do a deep dive into “audience exclusivity” — a contextual measure of preference — some interesting patterns emerge, namely that many Snapchat users use only Snapchat.

Take a look at this graph, for example, which indicates the difference between the percentage of Snapchatters who use only Snapchat on a given day with those who also use WhatsApp on the same given day:The difference is stark: 92% of Snapchatters do not use WhatsApp on a given day. Or, to look at it in reverse, on a given day, only 8% of Snapchatters on a given day also use WhatsApp.

That means that Snapchat’s audience is particularly loyal to Snapchat itself, and to reach them outside of Snapchat will require working with multiple apps, which can add degrees of difficulty depending on the type of ads and/or content.

Speaking of which, let’s look at how that same comparison plays out across a range of social apps:

As we saw we we focused solely on WhatsApp, Snapchat maintains a significant exclusive audience compared with other other apps popular with this demographic.

  • 40% of Snapchatters do not use Facebook on a given day
  • 48% of Snapchatters do not use Instagram on a given day
  • 63% of Snapchatters do no use Messenger on a given day
  • 80% of Snapchatters do not use Twitter on a given day

What does this mean for you if you’re a marketer or an advertiser? As this example shows, moving beyond sheer audience volume and towards factoring in metrics like audience exclusivity can help you more effectively and efficiently reach the audiences you’re looking for.

User demographics aren’t necessarily what you’d think they’d be

Chances are, when you think “Snapchat demographics,” you think of teenagers - "Gen Z" and "Millennials" - and as we saw above, it is true that it scores high in exclusivity in the 13+ category. But an intensive look at Snapchat demographics reveals that a number of its exclusive users are also in the 25-44 year-old demographic.

When you look at the overlap between Facebook and Snapchat among users aged 25-44, 29% only use Snapchat on a given day. True, this is lower than the 40% exclusivity rate for the 13+ demographic, but is still significantly higher than many might assume.

Many tend to assume that people over a certain age don’t use Snapchat and prefer Facebook, but when the data is looked at this way, it becomes apparent that in fact there’s a significant proportion of joint Facebook and Snapchat users between the ages of 25-44 who exclusively use Snapchat on a given day.

This is just one example of how important it is to use data to test your assumptions, and how putting data in the right context can reveal insights that help you more effectively and efficiently reach the high-quality audiences you’re targeting.

For even more on data-driven advertising and user acquisition strategies, be sure to visit the App Annie Academy, and of course sign-up for App Annie Intelligence now to begin tracking the performance of millions of apps.


November 21, 2017

Mobile App Strategy
Top and Trending Apps

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