Snap Inc. has finally stepped up its game against main competitor Facebook and rolled out mobile app-install ads. The addition is available via goal-based bidding and enables advertisers to target the Snapchat users most likely to download an app.
The company is using machine-learning technology to target the app install ads, which include swipeable full-screen video formats.
According to a statement to Business Insider, Peter Sellis, Director of monetisation product at Snap Inc. said that direct-response advertisers had been calling for “the ability to ‘bid for installs'” in auctions.
“This is a new, cost-efficient way to drive app installs right from Snapchat,” he added.
The app-install advertising market is predicted to reach $7 billion by 2020 according to BI Intelligence.
The ad format has been rather lucrative for Facebook where app-install ads accounted for 17% of its 2015 advertising revenue.
John Hession, the VP of Growth at Gametime, told Business Insider that “app discover is heavily influenced by social platforms, and Snap needs to be playing a large role in that space.”
Gametime was one of the early beta testers of the new Snapchat app-install ads with results being comparable to those of larger platforms. However, Hession added that cost-per install rates on Snapchat were beating the competition who ran “a lot more impressions and ad dollars.”
Targeting is an important feature of the addition. Snapchat clients will be able to target users which have previously shown interest in an ad. That means brands and publishers who have been running Snapchat filters and lenses can now target the same users on Snapchat for app-install campaigns.
Earlier this year, Snap Inc. partnered with Oracle Data Cloud to target Snapchat users by offline shopping behaviour. The latest addition to its targeting capabilities means advertising is becoming a less exclusive and more mainstream option for brands and retailers wishing to tap Snapchat’s audience.
It is vital for Snap Inc. that its advertising business flourishes to prove to shareholders that its IPO valuation was justified.