Snap Inc. (formerly known as Snapchat Inc.) came to Big Human in early 2022 with a seemingly simple request that could have a larger impact across the news industry. The media company needed content templates for the Snapchat discover feed that would automate the publishing flow for news organizations utilizing the social media platform.
Snapchat’s news partners faced the typical challenge of publishers in 2022: a lack of human power and the pressure to produce timely content. The powerhouse platform, which is popular with target demographics not typically engaged with traditional news media, needed to bolster its position as a reliable source of news with premium content partners like CNN, Bloomberg, and Fast Company. Big Human’s strategists and designers saw this as a chance to create a more viable tool for newsrooms across the world.
In typical Big Human fashion, we started the engagement with in-depth research. This involved a competitive audit that took into account Snapchat’s technology requirements, publisher use cases, and themes and trends in the modern design world. From there, we were able to identify commonalities and the areas we could best support both the client and its heavy-hitting publishers, Axios, the Washington Post, and Them, to name just a few.
Ultimately, the Big Human team produced 23 templates across five design styles for news and content production. The design styles were classified as classic, bold, techy & minimal, pop, and scandalous. The “classic,” content-first styles were refined, with clean shapes and serif fonts. “Bold” felt modern, with a limited palette. “Techy & Minimal” designs were airy and straightforward, accented with lines and frames. “Pop” templates were colorful and energetic, with layers, collages, overlays, and lots of texture. “Scandalous” designs had a sense of urgency, with eye-catching, loud, bright, and campy themes — ideal for celebrity news.
Moving the publishing industry forward
The world of news is constantly evolving with technology, culture, and the needs of the general audience. Content has to be ramped up and produced with quicker and quicker turnaround times. The work Big Human was able to implement for Snapchat allowed the company to keep up with the 2022 and beyond social media requirements — providing templates that serve as a catalyst for increased speed when getting news and information into the hands of the public.