Snapchat Media: Changes to Discover

Are Snapchat, media a better match with recent alterations to Discover feature?

When it comes to Snapchat, media brands must reconcile the upside of the channel with its challenges. Or overcome the challenges and maximize that upside, take your pick. Most digital publishers would pick the latter, of course, and recent design changes could help them get there.

But, as points out, the changes themselves could cause their own consternation – if not with magazine publishers, then possibly with users. As with any social media strategy, there’s a delicate balance. The question is, is it worth the trouble in this case?

We say yes, especially when the trouble is free or close to it. A little experimentation can go a long way. However, over-reliance on any platform can spell even more trouble.

Snapchat Media Trends: Parsing Latest Changes for Publishers

Snapchat has made some aesthetic and structural changes to Discover in an effort to help publishers make better use of the feature. examines how well they might work work.

“Its flagship feature, Discover, which was launched with the explicit aim of driving users of the core photo feature to consume publishers’ content within the app, has lain fallow for the past couple of months. Despite some notable success stories – Cosmopolitan has trumpeted its favourable results – there aren’t many publishers sharing their results, much less their advertising revenue figures. … So news that Snapchat is making changes to its Discover feature are likely to be especially welcome for a few reasons,” Chris Sutcliffe writes.

However, there are some red flags on the horizon.

“So the redesign is in service of shoring up the revenue publishers get from Discover. However, in a case of one step forward, two steps back, it seems the redesign might actually exacerbate some of the existing issues with the feature. Prior to the redesign Discover content was largely divorced from the photo sharing service on which the platform was originally based. TheNextWeb’s Brian Clark offers the opinion that the redesign does little to alleviate that feeling. … Additionally, the changes which prioritise Discover content actually risk harming its core proposition, as John Constine argues for TechCrunch. … The core idea behind Snapchat – content tailored to the platform – and its impressive growth stats are certainly attractive to the publishers taking part in Discover. But the product still feels bolted on to the core proposition, and the latest changes do nothing to change that.”

Meanwhile, Will Multiplatform Strategy Make Mags Less Reliant on Facebook?

Speaking of magazines on social media, reports from the GEN Summit in Vienna on publishers’ views about Facebook’s recent dominance with Instant Articles.


“Publishers are reliant on third parties for discovery and distribution of their products. I don’t think you’ll find many people who’d disagree with that statement, and you’ll find a few more who argue that publishers are overreliant on giants like Facebook for their future digital livelihood,” Sutcliffe writes.

“The talk confirmed some of the pessimistic discussions around publishers’ dependence on third parties, but offered some hope too. On the one hand, it’s acknowledged that publishers are reliant on third parties and might have to alter their content as a result. But it can be argued it’s just good practise to tailor your articles to fit the platform, even if you do skate close to accusations of kowtowing as a result. … Most interesting, though, were the assertions that plurality of distribution strategy can ameliorate the dangers of overdependence. If publishers exist across a range of platforms then no one third party can dictate their every move. That’s the theory, at least.”

Forbes’ Lewis DVorkin Discusses Contributor Network

Highly recommended recent interview at with Lewis DVorkin, well-known Forbes exec, about the publisher’s contributor network and its implications.

“Since we started the contributor network in 2010, according to comScore, traffic to has nearly quadrupled. Today, attracts a record audience of 45 million unique monthly visitors. We’re going to continue to grow by expanding. We’re exporting the model. We’ve had contributors in Europe and now we’re undertaking a huge expansion plan in Asia – adding to the worldwide growth of our contributor base,” DVorkin told Georgie Davies.

“The media business is about to go through another big change. We’re getting into a world of truly distributed content. Today, news content is appearing in far more places than a publication’s platform, including Amazon’s Echo, Twitter, bots, Facebook, and more. The challenge is, what do you do when people are consuming your content in places you don’t own? How do you monetize it?”

With Snapchat, media companies are still feeling their way around. Have you found your way? Let us know in the comments!<

To read more about Snapchat media trends and other news, visit


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