Despite facing slowing user growth and increased competition from Facebook and Instagram, Snap is setting its sights on profitability in 2019. Cheddar has obtained a memo from Snap CEO Evan Spiegel, which was sent to all Snap employees, in which he explains how the company plans to combat its growth struggles, the lingering effects of its controversial Snapchat redesign, and more.
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In the memo, Spiegel says that 2018 has been the most “challenging, transformative year” in Snap’s history. He says the company is working hard towards its “stretch goal” of breaking even in the fourth quarter of 2018, and wants to “achieve full year profitability” in 2018.
Regarding the controversial Snapchat redesign, which is internally referred to as “cheetah,” Spiegel admits it was “rushed” and solved one problem, but created many others. The Snap CEO explains that the Snapchat redesigned “got ahead of the existential crisis faced by many platforms today” by separating friend content from professional content, but the transition caused “frustration for our community.”
“We rushed our redesign, solving one problem but creating many others,” says the Snap CEO.
By launching our redesign quickly, and separating social from media, we got ahead of the existential crisis faced by many platforms today. We led the way in our industry by curating broadcast content, and separating Friends from professional content creators. Unfortunately, we didn’t give ourselves enough time to continue iterating and testing the redesign with a smaller percentage of our community. As a result, we had to continue our iterations after we launched, causing a lot of frustration for our community.
To help combat some of the issues still plaguing the Snapchat user interface, Spiegel says the company is working on new designs of its Discover tab, and will continue to add new partners and content to that section based on what is performing well “outside of Snapchat.”
Spiegel also address growing competition from Facebook, citing University of Michigan research that shows “Snapchat was second only to face-to-face communication when it comes to generating positive feelings.”
As Cheddar explains, Spiegel’s full 6,500 word, 15-page memo offers a “unique window into the mind of Snap’s reclusive CEO at a time when the company is under intense pressure to grow its business and appease investors.”
Read the full memo at Cheddar.