Related: What Google Chrome’s Native Ad Blocker Means For Marketers
Niche social apps allow users to display their passions and share with friends, from live-streaming professional gamers to recording lip-sync videos. The rise of these interest-based social platforms allow users to connect with people who share the same interests, and present brands with a rare opportunity to market to a highly targeted audience.
Not all of the social apps and sites in this post have an advertising product for brands to go into a ‘business manager’ and buy native ad space against a platform’s users. Some of the social apps or sites require brands to become part of the community, work with the social app, and/or work with influencers on the platform—which, as we’ve seen recently, are all practices marketers will have to implement if they want to continue to see success with social media marketing, regardless of which platform they’re on.
Let’s take a look at a couple of the apps and advertisers that have found success partnering to niche audiences.
Last March, Defy Media took a poll of teens and young adults in the U.S. and discovered that 14% of respondents use the musical.ly app. Although this is relatively low compared to apps like Instagram and Facebook, the lip-syncing app offers brands a unique way to connect with its 120 million users, mostly made up of young women and teens.
Coca-Cola’s musical.ly ad campaign generated 953,000 user-created video submissions, which led to 134 million views and a 28 percent engagement rate across social.
According to Digiday, musical.ly offers three advertising products. The first is vertical video ads, which populate within a ‘featured’ section on the homepage, and the second is traditional influencer video posts. The third, and the most interesting, advertising product musical.ly offers are custom challenges where influencers create videos and encourage viewers to create a similar video. This type of advertising has the potential to generate a lot of user-generated content, which is a powerful tool for brands as we’re continuing to see a rise in peer-to-peer influence.
Coca-Cola proved this with its campaign over the summer by challenging musical.ly users to create a video with “Share a Coke” lyric bottles. The campaign generated 953,000 musical.ly video submissions, which led to 134 million views and propelled #ShareaCoke to the #1 trending hashtag on the platform. Additionally, this activity created two million engagements on musical.ly “Share a Coke” influencer content, which had a 28% engagement rate across social (likes, comments, shares, retweets, favorites).
Much like when Snapchat first started offering an ad product, Musical.ly’s sales reps have been selling these ad products for high prices, pushing many media buyers away from testing the platform. Luckily, this hasn’t stopped brands of all sizes from working directly with influencers on Musical.ly to post branded content.
Twitch has 15 million daily active users who spend an average of 106 minutes on the platform each day.
Twitch is a popular online platform for watching and streaming video, mostly focusing on video games. Twitch has a self-reported 15 million daily active users who spend on average 106 minutes on the platform each day. Of those users, 81.5% are male, with 55% between the ages of 18 to 34.
Twitch offers IAB standard ad products such as pre-, mid-, and post-video ads, with banners and homepage takeovers available. Twitch also offers video ads in its partners’ livestreams that can’t be blocked by ad blockers. Advertisers can target games by title and genre, which allows them to be associated with the content that fits the brand best.
Twitch’s prominent gamers are perfect influencers for brands trying to connect with the platform’s enormous community. Devour, a frozen meals company owned by Heinz, had a sponsorship with popular gamer Dr. DisRespect, who has had 37 million channel views and is known to make a show of eating during his livestreams. Their partnership led to conversation and engagements not only on Twitch but across social.
Reddit users spend an average of 16 minutes on the site per visit, which is higher than any of the other popular social media platforms.
Known as the “front-page of the internet,” Reddit builds communities of like-minded users on subreddits such as r/advertising. The site’s user demographics skew toward males who are under 30 with 69% of U.S. Reddit users being male and 58% between the ages of 18-29. Users spend an average of 16 minutes on the site per visit, which is higher than any of the other popular social media platforms.
Reddit offers an advertising solution that is similar to Facebook Ads Manager, giving brands the ability to reach users based on subreddits, interests, and/or specific platforms. Duracell used Reddit’s advertising capabilities to drive awareness of their Star Wars broadcast spot during the holiday season. The brand targeted gamers and moms with banner ads. The campaign was simple yet effective and resulted in a 16% lift in brand awareness among its audience.
Are there any under-utilized social apps and platforms not mentioned above that you believe offer brands unique opportunities to advertise? Let us know in the comments below!