Not just a teen thing: Snapchat for your non-profit

June 4, 2015

I’ve been reluctant to join Snapchat, as it seemed like I missed the boat on this young, popular photo and video messaging app, and I didn’t understand how a message that self-destructs in 24 hours could be useful. But recently I finally gave it a go and have been interested to see how big brands are using the platform. So what does this mean for non-profits and what do you need to know to get going?

What makes Snapchat unique is the fact that the videos and photos you post are only temporary, which requires users to upload more and more content. While you are currently able to upload previously recorded media using a 3rd party app, Snapchat has gone back and forth on this issue, as they violate the essence of what Snapchat is about, which is to capture what’s happening in the moment.

Do you have a big fundraiser coming up? Snapchat is great for behind-the-scenes shots, as they can give an exclusive perspective on your event. Or if you regularly send texts out to volunteers or donors, this is a creative way to do it. What are big brands and news stations doing? Once on Snapchat it’s easy to view and follow their lead. has also written a detailed article about how they used Snapchat to interact directly with their audience.

So what’s the downside? Well, this is yet another platform to oversee and not everyone is on Snapchat. But if you are interested in reaching 14-28 year olds, this is a great way to do it. Not to mention, the site is growing at a tremendous rate. According to a recent article on Digitally Approved, Snapchat now has 100 million active users, with 50% of them in America…approximately 1/6 of the US population! The article has lots of impressive stats on frequency of use.

And in case Snapchat isn’t completely intuitive for you, Mashable has written a how-to article that makes it easy to get going in just a few minutes.

Do you use Snapchat? If so let us know how it’s working for you this year, as we anticipate this will be big for many non-profits in 2015.

–Alexandra Gunnoe, Program Specialist