By Evan DeSimone
Fresh off a $250 million investment from NBCUniversal, Vox is expanding its distribution base with a new dedicated channel on Snapchat’s Discover platform.
Vox will join Snapchat’s network of media partners who distribute content via the app. The program
Discover allows outlets to create short-lived “stories” composed of text, video and static images that expire after 24 hours. More importantly, Discover purports to offer publishers a direct line to the app’s highly-engaged and mostly millennial audience, which delivers a reported 6 billion views, daily.
Other media partners on the Discover platform include web publishing powerhouses IGN, Mashable, and Tastemade, as well as linear networks such as Comedy Central and ESPN and familiar media brands including The Daily Mail, Cosmopolitan, CNN, People, National Geographic,and Vice, and fellow recent NBCUniversal investee Buzzfeed.
While Snapchat has had success assembling a growing number of high-profile media partners, there have also been set backs. The app briefly dabbled in creating original content, developing a handful of short-form series to be distributed through its own Discover channel. However, that initiative didn’t appear to gain traction, leading Snapchat to cut loose its originals team back in October.
Snapchat has been putting increased focus on Discover as it tries to transform itself from a picture and video messaging app into a legitimate media platform in line with competitors like Facebook and Twitter. A recent redesign put the feature front and center, moving Discover content to a more prominent location in the users feed in an effort to accelerate engagement. Snapchat doesn’t publish engagement numbers, but the program has attracted the attention of some of the savviest media brands on the web, most of whom include Snapchat in their emerging distributed publishing models.