Snapchat Marketing Campaigns for the Holidays

When it comes to thinking about holiday marketing campaigns, we know Snapchat isn’t the first platform nonprofits think about (if you’re thinking about it at all). What was once a seemingly mysterious gated community reserved for big brands with bigger budgets, Snapchat has opened it gates to make advertising on platform more accessible to smaller brands.

You may be asking yourself, “Why Snapchat? How can it benefit my nonprofit?” With 173 million average daily users who spend an average of 30 minutes or more in the app each day, opening it an average of 18 times or more, Snapchat has one of the most engaged user bases.  Of these active users, 60% create content with the Snapchat camera daily. This leaves ample opportunity for your nonprofit to make waves with a compelling holiday campaign and reach new potential supporters.

We could spend all day laying out the basics of marketing on Snapchat, but with the holidays fast approaching we’re going to jump into the details. If you need a refresher,  you can check out this awesome guide by Hootsuite.

Got the basics? Good.

Now that you know all about marketing on Snapchat, lets get into the ways you can create fun holiday marketing campaigns.


Work with influencers

Working with influencers can be an effective and simple way to expand your organization’s reach. Scan your networks and search the web for popular social media influencers that align well with your organization’s brand and core values. If your nonprofit is hosting a holiday volunteering event, you can have an influencer cover the event live on their Snapchat stories, urging their followers to volunteer with or donate to your organization as well.

For example, leveraged their Digital Associate (who also happens to be a popular model) to help promote their “Love Letter” campaign for Valentine’s Day. Bryce Mathias dressed as cupid and used his Stories to ask DoSomething’s Snapchat followers where he should go to deliver love letters to the elderly. In a series of Snaps, he offered users a number of options for a text poll that would guide his travels. Everyone who responded was asked to create a love letter and deliver it to a senior citizen in their area, too. More than 55% of those reached participated in the love letter campaign. The takeaways from this win are simple, even if you don’t have a Bryce Mathias in your back pocket, encourage participation and input from current followers and incorporating an interactive component to campaigns.


Create a custom geofilter

Creating a custom geofilter is a moderately inexpensive way to help increase brand recognition for your nonprofit. It’s simple, too! You can create a custom graphic that has your organization’s logo and tagline or you can build one on Snapchat’s website.

The cool thing about geofilters is that you can choose the location(s) your filter shows up in, with a radius of up to 50,000,000 square feet. You can have your geofilters run for a few hours or even all year, with Snapchat’s annual geo-filter option. Check out the Metropolitan Opera’s geofilter, accessible once you’re inside the theater.

This would be a great option for nonprofit hosting local events or giving campaigns. For example, if your nonprofit is collecting clothes for a clothing drive and there are different drop off points around your area, you can set you filters to appear when people are near the drop off centers.

Run Snapchat Ads

Like other social media platforms, you can create engaging visual ads that drive traffic to your website. On Snapchat, you can create ads with great graphics or videos that link back to your donation or campaign page. Simply choose from four campaign objectives, set your targeting, budget, and ad schedule, and run the campaign all in Snapchat’s Ads Manager.

Last year, Be The Match, which manages a bone marrow registry to help patients with blood cancers such as leukemia and lymphoma, used Snap Ads to recruit young, healthy bone marrow donors. Be The Match tested Snapchat ads that prompted users to swipe up on the screen. This was linked to a form on the organization’s website where people can sign up to become a donor.

Get Snappin’

Like any great campaign, the best way to get the message across is by — you guessed it —  cross promotion! Make sure you are sharing your Snapchat handle across your social channels and on your nonprofit website to ensure your followers join your Snapchat audience. Whenever your Snapchat campaigns launch, don’t forget to post about it on your other social properties, and make specific asks for followers to engage.

The holidays are the perfect time of year to play around with new campaign ideas and capitalize on when people are feeling most generous. Take a stab at creating your own snapchat campaigns! Get creative and try out new ideas. 


If you have any additional ideas or want to let us know how your campaigns performed, tweet us at @wholewhale with the hashtag #whaledit.