“Sponsored lenses allow Snapchatters to express themselves and connect with a brand in a really creative and dynamic way”, a Snapchat spokesperson told the FT. The app was valued at $16 billion in May this year but only generated $3.1 million in 2014 after introducing the Discover feature.
The messaging app Snapchat, one of the most highly valued technology start-ups in the world, will begin to sell “sponsored lenses” to marketers, allowing brands to appear in young people’s pictures. Targeting major holidays like Halloween, Thanksgiving and Black Friday for this type of advertising buy, Snapchat plans to charge advertisers as much as $750,000 to reach the entire Snapchat userbase for a single day.
According to the Financial Times, Hollywood studios promoting movies are jumping at the opportunity.
Brands are also paying to imprint Snaps in other ways.
The new lenses do add a new dimension to not only to selfies but to marketing as well.
The Snapchat cash machine continues to run wild. And its Snapchat Discover feature, which launched in January, puts well-known publishers like CNN and ESPN in front of its vast audience-an audience that’s then handsomely monetized by Snapchat.
Sponsored lenses will enable the addition of brand logos and/or taglines to a Lenses users’ selfies. The filters are completely opt-in and native to the Snapchat ecosystem, a place with 100 million daily active users, according to the company. The most likely scenario of this actually working among users could be a few form of low-key sponsorship, perhaps providing a silly effect, like rainbow-puking, and modifying a corner of the photo with a “Brought to you by brand” message.
While the amount one needs to shell out for sponsored lenses may be high, keep in mind that an advertiser can potentially reach 100 million Snapchat users a day.