Snapchat Marketing for Brands: The 6 Metrics That Matter

When Snapchat founder Evan Spiegel famously turned down a 3 billion dollar offer from Facebook a few years ago, most people scoffed at his apparent arrogance.

Now with 100 million daily active users and over 8 billion videos consumed daily, looks like he wasn't so crazy after all.

Snapchat is the fastest growing social media network with untapped organic reach and engagement potential. The smartest brands have taken notice.

While there's been a tremendous lack of available analytics for the platform thus far, we've got you covered here at Dash Hudson - read on for a lay of the Snapland and a breakdown of every measurement metric you need for all your marketing ROI needs.



Cosmopolitan magazine Snapchat Discover channel analytics metrics performance measurementCosmo has its own Discover channel on the app. They have to keep pumping out fresh, relevant content for their audience on the daily.

Snapchat Cometh: Why It Matters

You'll be hard-pressed to find anyone under the age of 30 who doesn't use Snapchat. In fact, it's becoming more ubiquitous as the community grows, and updates are released to make the app more user (and marketer) friendly. Yup, what started as a disappearing video messaging system used by teens across the land is now the fastest-growing social media platform that everyone wants in on.

The cool kids are there, teenagers and 20-somethings are addicted to it, the bloggers are capturing every living moment (!), the Kardashians have found their new platform, and all kinds of other celebs and content creators have joined the fun.

Just entering the fray? Brands. There has been a domino effect of brands - from verticals like publishing, fashion, beauty, food - joining Snapchat and beginning to build their audiences. History has proven that smart businesses go where their consumers are and so the savviest brands are investing in getting a slice of the Snap pie.

While Snapchat has become an intuitive place for users to create and consume, brands are having a more difficult time getting the formula right.

Elle magazine Snapchat performance analytics ROI metricsElle US uses Snapchat to let their readers into the BTS world of editorial. Here, they're having coffee with a model and snapping the interview. Typical.

The Snapstruggle Is Real

Companies have been struggling to get a handle on the in-the-moment organic nature of Snapchat. Personal messaging is an intimate way for brands to engage with their audience, but doesn't solve for the marketing possibilities. Snapchat Stories, the 10 second videos or photos taken with the app's camera combined in a loop that refreshes every 24 hours, are the key way in which brands are communicating with their fans. The challenge is that Stories are recorded completely on the fly and cannot be edited. Be still my shaking iPhone.

Unless a brand has its own Discover channel, there's a conundrum as to what exactly it should be sharing. Look no further than some of the Snapchat marketing leaders: Anastasia Beverly Hills is a testament to how authenticity and personalization wins on social; Wet Seal won a Shorty Award for its Snapchat endeavors.

For brands seeking to crack the Snapchat code, read on below.


Birchbox Snapchat geofilter analytics marketing metricsBirchbox sent a staff member to Miami for a Digiday summit and had her Snapchat her adventures so that their audience could follow along.

Rethinking Snapchat Marketing Strategies

Secret's out: young consumers are not into traditional advertising. They don't trust it, and are largely absent from conventional media like television and print. Native ads, creating branded content that doesn't feel like an ad, is the modus operandi du jour.

Influencer marketing has become a key strategy for driving organic growth on mobile social channels. It's an effective way to get distribution, and product endorsements from an influencer can equate to major credibility. Audiences trust their social media idols and consider them to be references for the things they buy into, whether that's a restaurant recommendation, the latest denim brand, or where to take a vacation.

Your Lack of Data Concerns Me

Picture a black hole.

That sums up the type of visibility brands are getting into their organic marketing initiatives on Snapchat. Marketers need metrics to justify spend. With Snapchat's coming ubiquity, having now reached 8 billion video views on the daily, it will become a central part of the brand marketing mix. But without the ability to measure ROI, how are marketers supposed to effectively measure investments?

Dash Hudson solved this problem for Instagram. We're doing the same for Snapchat.

Maybelline New York Snapchat audience engagement growth analytics ROI metricsMaybelline engages their Snapchat audience by asking them to take action: the lip color that gets the most screenshots wins and by default generates a tangible metric the brand can use for audience measurement.

The Six Snapchat Metrics That Matter

Snapchat has changed the way we consume media and is redefining the habits of a generation. With marketing spend on Snapchat increasing, brands need to build a sophisticated approach to measurement.

Here's what you need to know about the six metrics that matter.

1. Unique Snap Views

Knowing how many unique views your Snaps are getting is critical information. It is an important engagement metric and allows you to deduce your audience size. Some might say it's key.

2. Screenshots

Snapchat prides itself on its organic nature and through-the-roof engagement rates. Another way to measure whether or not your Stories are captivating your followers? Screenshots. Just think about the interaction possibilities with audiences! (See the Maybelline image above.)

3. Share of Market

Research firms are now starting to prepare reports based off of publicly available Snapchat data. For example, Anastasia Beverly Hills is squashing her rivals with insanely high market shares. This type of insight is paramount for matching up your brand against what's out there and helping devise growth and content strategies.

4. Completion Rates

Completion rates serve as a key performance indicator for your Snapchat efforts. This tells you how many people are watching your Stories from beginning to end within that 24 hour loop. Is your content interesting enough to capture your audience's attention all the way through?

5. Tap Rates

Another way to figure out whether your Snapchat content is resonating with your followers is to measure how many of them are fully watching your Snaps and not tapping their screens to skip through. This will tell you how well your Stories resonate with your audience - the fewer the taps, the more engaged your followers. Commence happy dance.

6. Audience Insights

Knowing who follows you, and how they get there, is what drives next level social marketing. Find out how many users follow your account, how many you're adding every day, as well as where they're coming from. People can add you by username, Snapcode, web link, and via your Instagram bio*. Understanding how people are getting to your Snapchat will equip you with the right intel to manage your efforts.

snapchat measurement metrics analytics social media performance tool

It's become clear that Snapchat is where everything is heading, and where the smartest marketers and most discerning brands are spending their valuable time.

As more brands commit budget to growth and marketing initiatives on Snapchat, better solutions are required to measure performance and drive ROI.


*We know of a pretty killer tactic to use your Instagram to drive follower growth on Snapchat. Email team@dashhudson.com and we'll share :)