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June 21, 2021
6/21/2021

Can 6-Second, Non-Skippable Commercials Drive Efficiency?

When it comes to digital video and mobile experiences, consumer interest continues to surge. According to eMarketer, the total time US adults spent with digital media jumped 15% in 2020, marking the biggest increase since 2012. And time spent with mobile increased by an average of 31 minutes per US adult in 2020, reaching 4 hours and 16 minutes. As the pandemic recedes, growth is expected to slow, but the higher baseline will remain.  And as marketers take advantage of these accelerating consumer trends, platforms like Snapchat can give traditional platforms — and standard ad campaigns — a boost among hard-to-reach Gen Z audiences.
Consumers are spending more time with digital video and mobile
Snapchat Generation poised to grow in importance
Consider that Snapchat reaches over 75% of people aged 13-34 in established markets1. And Nielsen research commissioned by Snapchat has already proven that advertising on our platform drives +16% incremental reach to TV2. That’s particularly powerful when you realize that 71% of Gen Z audiences reached by Snapchat were not reached by TV2. With $4.4 Trillion in spending power, the Snapchat Generation is only poised to grow in importance. 
A refresher: Commercials vs. Snap Ads 
Online video on Snapchat comes in the form of Commercials, 6-second, non-skippable ad formats that are delivered in our Shows. Our content, which is curated and brand safe by design, features partners such as E! The Rundown and ESPN Sportscenter, as well as exclusive shows like the upcoming star-driven series Charli vs. Dixie and Off Thee Leash With Megan Thee Stallion. Snap Ads are the skippable cousins of Commercials — running in between Snapchatters’ stories and Discover content.
From a media buy perspective, we already know that the addition of online video (OLV) Commercials to a Snap Ads campaign helps increase the reach of a campaign within the Snapchat platform, with a median incremental reach of 14%3.
But we set out to learn something new and specific to OLV.  We tested the hypothesis that adding Commercials to the product mix on Snapchat could drive both effectiveness and efficiency.
Putting Commercials to the test 
Throughout 2020 and 2021, Snapchat partnered with advertisers across six verticals to run a series of 16 multi-cell hypothesis tests. The key questions we considered were the following: 
  • Does it work? Does adding Commercials to your ad product mix improve lift?
  • What’s the impact? How much does adding Commercials increase incremental value?
  • How is cost impacted? Is the higher CPM of video on Snapchat worth the investment?
To test the power of Commercials, we compared a business as usual (BAU) ad product mix  with a BAU ad product mix + Commercials. The key metrics  we prioritized included lifts, statistically significant positive rates and cost per’s in key categories such as Awareness, Favorability and Intent.
Commercials double lift results across the funnel
When we finished the series of tests, it was clear that adding Commercials can be a powerful accelerator for driving results. Not only did the addition of Commercials boost metrics, it actually drove double the lifts across the funnel. 
To calculate  efficiency, we look at the relative CPM and the total spend across all ad products in a given group. And we found that adding Commercials to an ad product mix increased efficiency by a whopping 65%4. Even though these non-skippable, premium ads command a higher CPM, the incremental lift they create far outweighs the higher price points. 
What this means for marketers
For marketers, the message is unmistakable: Not only is online video  on Snapchat a natural extension of reach, it’s a core piece of any efficient marketing strategy — especially those targeting Gen Z. 

Snapchat can help your small, medium or large business grow.

1Snap Inc. internal data Q4 2020. Pepentration calculated as MAU divided by 2020 population estimates, per United Nations World Population Prospects, 2019. Representative Established Markets: US, UK, Australia, France, Netherlands.
2Nielsen Total Ad Ratings Meta Analysis commissioned by Snapchat; 31 measured Snapchat + TV campaigns run from 9/30/17- 1/2/20; P18-49, P18-34, P13-24, P13-49, P13+, P18+, P18-54, P21+, P21-49, P21-54, P25-39, P25-54, M13-24, M18+
3Snap Inc. internal data, February ‘20 - July ‘20. *Median* reach across *20* Snap Ads and Commercials campaigns which had brand lift studies; *IQR [20.7%; 18.8%]*. Incremental reach is defined as Commercials Only Reach / (Total campaign reach - Snap Ads Only Reach). Reach is defined as number of unique users who had the following impressions: only Commercials, only Snap Ads or both. *Campaigns selected had >50% of the total reach coming from Snap Ads*
4Snap Inc. Internal Data; meta analysis of global multi cell tests for commercials vs. non-commercials Jan 1, 2020 - May 11, 2021, Ad Awareness N=16
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