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Snapchat v/s YouTube Marketing – What’s right for your Brand?

YouTube Marketing

When Snapchat initially launched in September 2011, it was just another obscure mobile app. But fast forward to 2016, it is one of the fastest growing Social networks in the world! With over 100 million daily active users, and over 400 million snaps per day; Snapchat is a favourite amongst millennials.

I was recently interacting with a friend of mine who works as a digital marketing head of a lifestyle brand from the US. Throughout the interaction, he kept stressing the importance of using Snapchat as a marketing tool for brand building, over other traditional platforms like YouTube.

snapchat vs youtube

snapchat vs youtube

His logic was simple – Snapchat used by mostly millennials and YouTube is more of a mainstream phenomenon. Snapchat has better brand recall whereas YouTube ads do not.

So, long after the conversation was over, I had a question nagging in my mind – YouTube or Snapchat. Which one’s better for a brand?

Why Snapchat?

One of the most significant advantages that marketers see with Snapchat is the fact that, one can produce daily stories that can engage and excite the audience. Since Snapchat stories only last for 24 hours, the content that brands share with the audience always remains fresh. And Snapchat also provides a lot of native features like geo-filters, emojis, and music that can make these stories fun to consume.

  • Snapchat video views are always full-screen and developed for mobile users.
  • Snapchat Video views are the product of deliberate user intent. So, every video view is essentially the product of organic interest and engagement.
  • The limited lifespan of Snapchat’s videos forces urgency and immediate action from the viewers.
  • Video completion rate on Snapchat is 9 times greater than horizontal video views on other platforms.

Disadvantages of Snapchat

Like any marketing platform, Snapchat also comes with its inherent disadvantages and challenges:

  • Snapchat marketing is distinct when compared to video marketing on other platforms since it hosts vertical videos. A horizontal video created for marketing purposes can be deployed on multiple platforms like YouTube, Facebook, and Twitter but not on Snapchat. For smaller marketing teams, this can be a time overhead as they have to come up with videos exclusively for snapchat.
  • Limited analytics tools are another major detraction. Most marketers don’t know what data to extract and analyse.
  • Measuring the ROI of a campaign’s success is difficult since defining user engagement is not simple and straightforward.

Where does YouTube Marketing stand?

LaMercatique from New York is a marketing firm that works with luxury brands like TAG Heuer. It’s CEO Gregory Pouy says:

“All brands are monitoring Snapchat, saying [that] Snapchat is the coolest for millennials—it’s not true. The coolest tool for millennials is YouTube.” Well, he makes sense, doesn’t he? Despite the aggressive competition from the likes of Facebook, Twitter etc., YouTube is still the de facto standard for online video.

While it is true that snapchat videos can create a sense of urgency in the viewers; for brands that need more than 8 seconds to tell their story, YouTube is any day better. Another major added advantage that YouTube holds over snapchat is – SEO. Many of these new-age cool brands don’t even have a properly organised YouTube channel. They’re ignoring SEO and also, the way people search for information.

I agree that snapshot can be a great marketing tool for brands, but I’d like to reiterate that brands cannot ignore the long-term benefits of a robust YouTube strategy. What do you think – snapchat or YouTube?

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