NBCUniversal has been quite bullish on Snapchat for years. Now, the media giant says it can prove that Snapchat is helping it reach new viewers on mobile screens — thanks to Snapchat’s integration with Comscore.
NBCUniversal, which invested $500 million in Snap during the company’s IPO in March 2017, has been producing a slew of original shows for the platform. This includes Snapchat versions of TV franchises “The Voice” and “Saturday Night Live,” as well as the daily news show from NBC News called “Stay Tuned,” which was developed exclusively for Snapchat. Since premiering as a twice-daily show, “Stay Tuned” has expanded to cover breaking news and big events such as the March For Our Lives rally.
Thanks to Snap’s integration with Comscore in November 2018, NBC News — and other digital publishers on Snapchat — can better understand and verify the audience they have been building on the platform. In 2018, “Stay Tuned” averaged between 25 million and 35 million unique viewers per month on Snapchat, according to the data NBC News received from Snap. According to additional Comscore data, which offers an unduplicated audience number, NBC News said that only a third of the “Stay Tuned” audience also watches, reads or listens to NBC News content on other platforms including Apple News or Google AMP. That means two-thirds of the audience for “Stay Tuned” is exclusively found on Snapchat. (NBC News declined to share whether Comscore verified Snap’s reporting of 25 million to 35 million unique monthly viewers for “Stay Tuned.”)
“Bigger numbers are fun, but what has changed is this is a net new audience for us. The overlapped audience is terrific, but for the audience who isn’t consuming us anywhere else, they’re now consuming us on Snapchat, and that’s entirely new for us,” said Nick Ascheim, svp of digital at NBC News and MSNBC.
For NBC News, the goal is to bring this new audience from Snapchat to its other platforms. NBC News chose to run “Stay Tuned” as its own channel operated by a new division within the larger news network.
One way NBC News has connected “Stay Tuned” to the rest of the network is by having the hosts — Gadi Schwartz, Savannah Sellers and Lawrence Jackson — be involved in other programming, while also have NBC News’ TV anchors participate in the Snapchat show. For example, “Meet The Press” host Chuck Todd appeared in a recent “Stay Tuned” episode.
“Whether it’s conscious or unconscious, it’s all based on trust. If you’re a fan of Gadi, Savannah, Lawrence or anyone else on the show, these are places we can form relationships,” Ascheim said.
“Stay Tuned” has a younger audience on Snapchat than the people NBC News reaches across the rest of its network, which is not surprising given Snap’s overall reach among millennials and teenagers. About 75 percent of the “Stay Tuned” audience is under 25, and 90 percent is under 34, according to Snapchat’s data. The audience also skews slightly more female, Ascheim said.
“Every [network] talks about trying to get younger, and it’s never easy. No question that these things get noticed [by advertisers,]” Ascheim said.