Snapchat is entirely unique to the Big 3 social media platforms, and it comfortably rivals Facebook and Twitter for its ability to cover live sports and connect with fans.
Twitter has always been the epicentre for sporting conversation, especially since the launch of live video integration apps, like Periscope. But Facebook is now looking to compete using Facebook Stadium, a native match hub which went live during Super Bowl 50. This is a well conceived offering from the social giant, and couple that with Facebook Live (video), which was recently used as a behind the scenes broadcast for the NBA All Stars in Toronto you have a pretty air tight approach. But, now there’s a new and pretty successful kid on the block.
What sets Snapchat apart?
Snapchat’s Our Story feature, which is a curated feed of stories shared from specific locations and events, provides a raw and unfiltered perspective on the match or event. In the US, the NFL & NBA have weekly Our Stories, and key events such as Kobe Bryant’s farewell have been given their own exclusive coverage through the app. Snapchat has also been praised as the clear winner in the Super Bowl 50 social battle.
In Australia, the AFL Grand Final went global with their own Our Story which took viewers everywhere from in the stands, to on the ground celebrating with the players as they accepted their medals. Snapchatters from around the world were able to experience the match, and the AFL took its biggest day of the year to a whole new market.
Sports teams and organisations are flocking to the platform to give their fans exclusive insight from the locker room, and bring fans into the inner sanctum. In 2016, the Australian Open joined Snapchat, with exclusive interviews, player warm-ups and fan engagements all shared on the app.
What about for sponsors and brands?
Snapchat have developing commercial options, which allow brands to push their messages on the app. While currently reserved for big budgets, brands can sponsor a story and align themselves with an event through creating branded filters and lenses for users to share with their friends, or branded messages appearing throughout the Our Story feed.
Brands can also buy advertising within Snapchat Discover, a content platform including major media players such as Buzzfeed, News.com and Fox Sports.
Many brands are now aware of the value Snapchat offers in terms of cutting through to audiences at just the right time. Six months ago a number of marketers were sure the furore around the platform would die out – but that’s not the case, especially for sports and sponsors.
Our favourite Snapchat campaigns
- Gatorade's sponsored Super Bowl Snapchat filter earns 160 million impressions: Even tennis superstar Serena Williams got on board, virtually having a tub of Gatorade thrown over her head and sharing it with her hundreds of thousands of followers!
- Pepsi Max UK launch new cherry flavour with Snapchat: Thousands of Snapchatters experienced a burst of cherry with this fun campaign from Pepsi Max UK.
- Real Madrid engage fans in a brand new way with Snapchat: Real Madrid are the first Spanish soccer club to jump on the Snapchat train. Not only did they set up their own account to give exclusive backstage access on game day, fans are able to upload their own content to a regular Real Madrid live story that's broadcast through the platform to all users.