Since its IPO in March, Snap (TAG) has had a daunting road as its stock price continues to plummet, making Investor Relations of significant focus for the company and its CEO Evan Spiegel. However, Snap’s earnings call shed light on a new focus for the company — Creator Relations. It’s been a common and consistent gripe among social video creators, particularly those like Amanda Cerny, Lele Pons, Logan Paul and King Bach, who command significant fandom, that Snapchat’s lack of attention and monetization has been a catalyst for spending more effort on Snap competitor Instagram Stories.
In 2018, with a new Android app and additional tools for the creative community aimed at monetization and premium content creation, Snap will aim to remedy its missteps with creators.
“While we have made significant progress in our work to empower the creation of user generated content from friends, and premium content from publishers, we have historically neglected the creator community on Snapchat that creates and distributes public Stories for the broader Snapchat audience,” Spiegel said during the investor call on Tuesday. “In 2018, we are going to build more distribution and monetization opportunities for these creators in an effort to empower our creative community to express themselves to a larger audience and build a business with their creativity.”
And Spiegel’s agenda isn’t too distant from that of fellow power CEO and rival Mark Zuckerberg, who claimed Facebook would shift towards a revenue-sharing model that empowers “average people and businesses to upload their content into the system.”
“Developing this ecosystem will allow artists to transition more easily from communicating with friends to creating Stories for a broader audience, monetizing their Stories, and potentially using our professional tools to create premium content,” added Spiegel during his portion of the call.
It may be too late for Snap’s recovery, though, as creators have sprinted to Instagram Stories, where there are over 800 million viewers on Stories monthly (Sept. 2017), significantly more than Snap’s 250 million monthly users. Earlier this month, a study from Mediakix cited a 2x increase in stories posted by over a dozen top creators and a 30% decrease in influencer posts on Snapchat.
However, Spiegel, though tonally dry during the call, encouraged investors that a product overhaul, a continued focus on content and its creators, and a more robust Android product will help attract a broader and more connected audience globally.