Auto Advance Out, Story Playlist In
The notorious Auto Advance feature, which automatically directed users to the next set of Snap stories on their chronological feed, will be removed. It will be replaced by the new Story Playlist feature, which allows users to select the Stories they would like to watch in a seamless playlist.
That means you’ll no longer be forced to watch your best friend’s Story documenting a Beyoncé concert — followed by your former co-worker’s 10-part Story starring their sleeping hamster.
What This Means for Brands
While these changes seem to be directed at Snapchat users, they also affect the many advertisers and brand publishers on the app. The Snap Ads that were previously displayed between the auto-played Stories will now be played within the user-generated Story Playlist. If users watch individual Stories instead of using the Story Playlist feature, Snapchat may play an ad post-roll.
Tweaks to the layout of the app in the wake of this change significantly affect brands that share original content Stories through the app’s “Discover” feature. This branded content will be relegated to the bottom of the Stories page, now appearing below friends’ Stories. This shift in attention away from brand Stories is especially concerning because the majority of traffic to publishing partners comes from the Stories screen.
It is also possible that allowing users to more easily pick and choose which Stories they view might translate into users watching fewer Stories, and therefore seeing fewer ads. On the flipside, the user growth Snapchat seems to expect from this overhaul might result in a bigger audience for these brands to reach. We’ll have to wait until the update becomes available to all Snapchat users to pass judgment.
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