What’s The Deal With Snapchat For Nonprofits?

Tina Jepson
Tina Jepson

I have to admit that, like many others, I was a bit skeptical of Snapchat at first. For many of us, the whole idea of images that delete themselves after being viewed on a mobile device just didn’t make sense from either a social or marketing perspective. Really how can this help nonprofits engage supporters and raise money online?

Boy, was I wrong.

Snapchat is an extremely popular mobile application available on Android and iOS platforms, and it is transforming the way we share information with our networks.

It is such a hit with millennials: especially those between the ages of 18 to 29. In fact, as of mid-2015, there were over 100 million total users and 30% of all millennials had a Snapchat account.

Snapchat Screenshot

From a marketer’s perspective, it may seem odd that Snapchat would be an effective marketing tool for a nonprofit. However, some nonprofits and brands are finding concrete success in viewer engagement with this social media platform.

Let’s take a look at 4 nonprofits driving impact through Snapchat.

United Way- Driving Impact Through Targeting Demographics

One great reason why you should definitely consider using Snapchat sooner rather than later is because, as stated above, the demographics of current users are fairly specific.

Snapchat United Way

So, this marketing platform is great for a nonprofit like United Way that has a traditionally older donor base because of their popular employee giving campaigns (fundraising in the workplace).

Snapchat allows them to focus on attracting the attention of a younger population, ultimately helping to maintain relevancy in our shifting world of fundraising.

By using Snapchat, United Way and other nonprofits are targeting a generally untapped population: teens and young adults.

“With Snapchat, United Way and other nonprofits are targeting a generally untapped population: teens and young adults….” tweet this

Snapchat helps to broaden their audience with a new demographic, further driving impact with a potential increase in donations and action.

Save the Children- Driving Impact Through Authenticity

There’s a lot that can be said for authenticity, and Snapchat helps to provide that for a nonprofit. Take Save the Children, a nonprofit that promotes children’s rights worldwide. Their account features stories about their work in places like Africa and South America.

“There’s a lot that can be said for authenticity, and Snapchat helps to provide that for a nonprofit…” tweet this

What’s impressive about Save the Children is that they are able to give their Snapchat friends a glimpse into their work through the stories they share. Take this video, for example:

In it, Save the Children shares impactful images of the Zaatari refugee camp in Jordan that currently houses refugees fleeing Syria.

By showcases images from the field, Save the Children ensures their audience that they have “boots on the ground” and are investing in children’s future. In a nutshell, these Images have the ability to highlight your authenticity.

charity: water- Driving Impact With Relatable Images

Pictures are the backbone of Snapchat. If you have a Snapchat account and are familiar with the interface, then you know even the “home screen” is a camera app! So it’s only natural that nonprofits use this platform to show images that their audience can relate to.

charity water snapchat

Take charity: water. They have a very active Snapchat presence and they are known for not only sharing photos of their charitable work, but also providing a behind the scenes glimpse at life in the office.

This photo series was shared with charity: water’s friends on Halloween and it shows the staff members in their costumes. Yes, it is really simple and silly and not at all related to their impact in society. However, it is fun, lighthearted, and makes the nonprofit seem real and approachable — which is something that all nonprofits need to focus on in order to engage this generation of potential donors. Driving Impact With Engaging Videos

As of February 2016, Snapchat users were watching upwards of 8 million videos every day, up from 2 million in mid-2015. That’s a huge increase that is projected to continue growing as more and more people, businesses, and nonprofits like sign up for accounts.

This video is an example of how all nonprofits should be using Snapchat., a nonprofit committed to connecting young people with social change, hilariously uses a male model during NYC’s Fashion Week to bring awareness about the organization to people on the streets. The resulting clip is bound to put a smile on your face.

The idea itself makes the nonprofit seem hip and relatable– a sure-fire way to engage their target audience and encourage further involvement.

As you can see, nonprofits are using Snapchat to engage their younger audiences with fun photos, inspiring videos, and overall authentic content in order to drive them to action. This action has the potential to create significant impact.

Now is the time to get your nonprofit set up with a Snapchat account so that you can, at the very least, reserve your username. For more information on setting up a Snapchat account, head to the Snapchat support page.

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