Snapchat’s new video platform “Discover” ventures into the familiar territory of video content sharing already available on YouTube, while somehow appearing to be completely new. Media has been buzzing about Discover for months, but it was on Tuesday that Snapchat finally released the new platform.

 

Big name brands, including CNN, ESPN, and Food Network have already partnered with Snapchat to produce exclusive video content, which will appear for a 24-hour period in Discover. The time restriction on the content appearing in Discover is Snapchat’s way of keeping the content fresh. Snapchat touts Discover as a completely new platform due to its content being created by artists and editors, whose work is merited on its quality, rather than “likes and shares”:

 

“Discover is different because it has been built for creatives. All too often, artists are forced to accommodate new technologies in order to distribute their work. This time we built the technology to serve the art: each edition includes full screen photos and videos, awesome long form layouts, and gorgeous advertising.”

 

What isn’t different about Discover is that it will feature ads. Skeptics have long predicted the death of social networks that implement ads, hence the introduction of Ello. But platforms such as Facebook and YouTube have only grown. This tells us that the public has such an insatiable appetite for content, particularly video content, that they’re willing to put up with the nuisance of seeing ads on their favorite networks.

 

Picture of Snapchat App

Snapchat users select from brand channels to watch the day’s latest video content (TechCrunch.com)

The implications of Discover are vast. Brands will likely partner with Snapchat in droves, and platforms that don’t currently host video will soon follow. Brands that fail to keep up with the surge in popularity of video content will watch their networks fade in the imaginations of users, and users will flock to the platforms that win at innovation.

 

Like all companies, social media platforms must constantly evolve to meet consumer demands. Adding video content and other media is one way to do it, but as one brand is hard at work creating a new product, another is simultaneously launching one. The public, so accustomed to the breakneck speed of media and technology, is restless, and they have no qualms with jumping off one platform and hopping on another.

 

A good product isn’t enough. Companies with exceptional products go out of business every day. Brand loyalty is built through the relationship between brand and consumer. It’s a process that takes years to build, but once it’s firmly in place, it’s a process that isn’t easily reversed. In public relations, our focus is on building those relationships, nurturing them, and repairing them when they’re on the verge of being broken.

 

Do you use Snapchat? Do you think Discover is a viable platform on a network with a substantially young audience? Leave your thoughts in the comments section, or tweet me @nataliepetitto.