using snapchat in charity comms

Snapchat is a growing social media platform beloved of young people. Snapchats are pictures with a line of text and are meant to be disposable. But how can PR and comms use it?

Snapchat, here today…gone in 10 seconds?

I recently wrote this article for @GuardianVoluntary about how charities can make use Snapchat to their advantage, alongside some of the things to look out for.

The article came about because of an opportunity we took when WalesOnline announced they had started using Snapchat. They have been developing Newsroom 3.1, and as part of that they are experimenting with the Snapchat app.

We’ve been seeing this develop, and as we’re quite well set up online now, we’ve been thinking of ways to get ahead of the game and be ready with some news when our media outlets try new things, so when I saw that WalesOnline joined Snapchat – I wondered if we could use it to our advantage, and it turns out we could.

After tweeting about the fact WalesOnline had joined, I got chatting to the journalist running the account who I then emailed with an idea we’d been thinking about for a while, but couldn’t quite work out when to use it. The idea was the #selflessie – a selfie of you doing something selfless for Tenovus – whether that’s volunteering, donating, fundraising or training for an event, we thought it was a nice way to show people the variety of activities our supporters get up to.

We decided that the #selflessie would work for Volunteers’ Week and would fit nicely with people sending snaps to WalesOnline, so we used Snapchat as a a hook and it got picked with a good response on Facebook and Twitter – as well as through the app. We were featured as the partner for the Volunteers’ Week campaign with WalesOnline, as well as our snaps appearing in three of their Snapchat galleries.

It was a great way to use our creative ideas and new media to generate some media coverage for Tenovus, which I’ve blogged about before.

While as an organisation we’re not planning to get on Snapchat at the moment – it’s proved a really useful tool for us to generate some coverage so far. I’m looking forward to seeing how it develops and if other regional newspapers start adopting it, we can then get ready to send more snaps out from across the country.

What do you think about organisations using Snapchat, are any using it really well? I’d love to hear your thoughts. Leave me a comment below or tweet me @willdotbarker.

Will Barker is pr and digital officer at Tenovous. He also blogs here.

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Picture credit.