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Snapchat’s Push Against Branded Content

Snapchat CEO Evan Spiegel speaks to journalist Ken Auletta. Photo by Larry Busacca/Getty Image.
Snapchat CEO Evan Spiegel speaks to journalist Ken Auletta. Photo by Larry Busacca/Getty Image.

Last summer, when Bacardi wanted to do a social media campaign for its liqueur brand St-Germain, the company first turned to Snapchat.

Bacardi’s media agency, Possible Worldwide, presented the idea of a series of Live Stories videos in the style of a peep show that featured “New Girl” actress Hannah Simone interacting with St-Germain.

Snapchat didn’t take to it. Its sales representatives thought the videos would look too similar to user-generated videos, misleading people into thinking it was unpaid content. Rebuffed, Possible opted to air the campaign on Twitter’s live streaming app, Periscope.

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It’s all part of a sped-up maturation on Snapchat’s part as it tries to build its ad business—even if it means doing it very differently.

—Amir Efrati contributed to this article


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As one Snapchat sales executive explained to an ad buyer: If your Snapchat strategy involves a content calendar, you're failing.

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