Posted inSocial MediaNews

Snapchat’s New Ad Campaign Pitches It as ‘Antidote to Social Media’

The messaging reflects what Snapchat describes as widespread exhaustion from the social media popularity race


New Promotional Campaign

Snapchat has launched a new promotional campaign, in which it seeks to present its platform as the anti-social media, in order to distance itself from the many issues being experienced within other apps, while also leaning into evolving online engagement trends.

As you can see in this video, Snapchat is attempting to position its platform as an antidote to the divisive popularity contest that social media has become in order to attract more users.

Snapchat Says:

“The promise of social media started out great. It was a place where we could connect with people and share bits of our lives. A place where we could be a part of something bigger than ourselves – where we could feel supported and loved. But somewhere in the adolescence of social media, things began to feel off. Friends became people who felt more like strangers. Moments became more curated. Sharing became more contrived.”

Snapchat, it claims, is unique in that it does not have a feed and does not endeavor to expose your posts to as many people as possible. Snapchat opens with the camera and deletes your content by default. This, it appears, allows individuals to feel more comfortable posting about more elements of their lives.

“People feel exhausted by the social media popularity contest. Fed up with having to look pretty or perfect in every post. Tired of competing for likes and comments. Misled by misinformation. But Snapchat is not social media. It never was. In fact, it was built as an antidote to social media”

It’s actually a pretty enticing argument, however how Snapchat reconciles this with its roots as a platform for more risqué, controversial content is another question.

It’s also worth noting that Snap has been pushing this alternate viewpoint for years, seeking to separate itself from the “social media” label as it strives to differentiate its offering.

When Snap originally introduced its Spectacles camera glasses in 2017, it attempted to rebrand itself as “a camera company,” with a focus on discovering new methods to innovate the capture of experiences rather than as a social engagement platform.

Snap CEO Evan Spiegel has repeatedly underlined Snapchat’s camera focus while still describing it as a messaging service, unlike other social apps. Indeed, in a leaked memo given to workers earlier this month, Spiegel declared that “social media is dead,” with Snapchat poised to take up the cause and deliver improved human connection, as opposed to angst-inducing social apps.

In some ways, he is right.

Is it really to check in anymore?

Social media platforms have been increasingly focusing on video and AI-based content recommendations, following in the footsteps of TikTok, which has seen great success by highlighting the most relevant video clips to each user, rather than limiting their experience to only the people and profiles that they’ve chosen to follow.

In this sense, social media usage is no longer about seeing what your friends and family are doing, but rather about what’s trending. As a result, they would be more of an entertainment app than a communication tool.

The social elements have transitioned to more confined, private group talks, primarily through messaging apps. And as this trend continues, it appears that the social aspect is shrinking. And when you consider that the vast majority of social media users never publish in any app and instead consume content, there is rising evidence to back up Spiegel’s claim.

So, is Snapchat the antidote, the alternative that more people are looking for as a way to stay connected and interact with smaller groups of friends?

For many young users, it undoubtedly is, as seen by every study that examines demographic usage trends. The following, for example, comes from Pew Research’s social media usage trend report, which was released earlier this week.


The difficulty for Snap is that, as evidenced by these statistics, usage is declining as its audience ages. However, Snap is just 12 years old, and it may yet have greater staying power within broader demographic groupings in the coming years.

However, as its audience grows older, Snap’s relevancy is fading. For years, it has tried in numerous ways to address this issue. However, the research suggests that Snap may simply be a fashionable kid app that grows less interesting to adults who connect in alternative ways.

So, while it may be a good alternative to social media as advertised, that is not a message that is resonating with a larger group of consumers.

Can Snap change that? Will this reiteration of its goal attract new users, many of whom have already switched to chat apps?

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