Social media platform Snapchat will offer “behavioral targeting” services to advertisers beginning the third quarter of this year, according to reports.
Clement Xue, Snapchat director for revenue operations said the $20 billion company will start offering insight based advertising models based on audience behavior within the mobile application. However, industry observers say the scope could expand to general web browsing activities in the future.
Snapchat ads are seen from 500,000 to 1 million times a day, while videos are expected to increase fivefold to 10 billion this year from 2 billion in 2015. Some advertisers, such as Gatorade, have even added a gaming component to their ads to boost engagement and expand potential uses of the platform.
The platform, which is currently popular among millennials, allows users to post videos and images that expire and disappear after a certain period of time. Its user base is currently young, comprised of $41 million millennials, however it is expected to expand to older segments as more individuals discover and use the application.
Still, Snapchat leadership remains committed to protecting user privacy. Chief executive Evan Spiegel has long been known to advocate against so-called “creepy” ads that follow users as they browse the internet.
In its privacy center, it promises: “We want you to feel understood. We want to understand what’s relevant to you and your life, and we want to show you things that you’ll care about. At the same time, we don’t want to serve ads that are so custom-tailored that they feel invasive or uncomfortable."