Move over Facebook… and Instagram… and Twitter… and basically all other social media apps. Snapchat has proved it isn’t just a social fad. It’s here to stay, and it continues to roll out new, unique marketing tools for brands to reach its users. Snapchat has quickly become one of the pivotal social media outlets for allowing brands to deliver content that resonates with people in real-time.

According to Snapchat’s 2016 Snaplytics Quarterly Report, Snapchat has over 200 billion daily active users, 10 billion video views per day, and 9,000 photos shared every second. Most importantly, it’s reaching a young audience full of highly engaged users who love interacting with photos and videos.

So what can your credit union do to harness the attention of this huge audience?

Glad you asked! Here are a few tips you can use to boost engagement through Snapchat.

Showcase new products and services with a custom Snapchat story

What better way to show followers your credit union’s unique personality than taking them on a brand journey using the “My Story” option. One of the most valuable tools in digital marketing is personalization, and creating a series of snaps that tell your credit union’s brand story is a great way to continuously engage followers and people in your community. It’s also a great way to humanize your credit union. Showcase behind-the-scenes content that can’t be seen anywhere else. Preview a new product. Roll out a sneak peak of an upcoming event. Consider providing weekly financial tips. Or simply demonstrate a typical day at the office. You can also really go to town and create some totally original content.

Quick tip: At least 60% of all stories on Snapchat contain video, so you’ll want to take that into account when creating your Story. Whatever you choose to do, keep spontaneity and charisma in mind. This is what Snapchat is all about.  

Host a Q&A

The Chat feature on Snapchat allows you and your followers to direct message each other. You can utilize this feature to set up a question and answer session. Inform your followers ahead of time that you’re setting up a Q&A so they know when to send in their questions. You can give them a specific topic to ask about or leave it open for them to decide. Once they send a question via Chat, your credit union can instantly answer them back. This increases engagement while generating valuable brand feedback.

Run contests

Snapchat is a great platform for hosting contests. In fact, according to co-founder and CEO, Thomas Celius, research shows that recommendations and calls to action made through Snapchat are much stronger than through Facebook or Instagram.

A tried and true tactic that works involves encouraging your followers to send in Snapchat entries to your account for a chance to win a prize. For example, your credit union can ask users to submit a selfie of themselves with your logo for a chance to win a prize. You can also increase engagement with followers and connect with your local community by sharing entries through your credit union’s Story feed.

Promote events

Snapchat is really useful for promoting a new branch opening or something extra unique that your credit union is hosting or sponsoring, such as a community event. Use photos and videos to announce your big news, and then keep the excitement going by offering updates leading up to the big day, along with actual coverage of the event itself. And if you really want to go the extra mile, make sure and create your own geofilter to offer something fun and original that your followers will want to share. It will add a lot of extra engagement. Not sure how to create a geofilter? Our next suggestion tells you how.

Create a Geofilter

Okay, we admit it. We love all of the different marketing opportunities a geofilter can provide. These are digital stickers that Snapchat users can add to photos and videos they’re posting on the social network. McDonald’s was the first to use sponsored geofilters when they were opened up to advertisers in 2015.

Fast forward to 2017, and your credit union can create custom Geofilters for just about anything! Full disclosure: they’re not free. However, they’re great at driving engagement by offering users something fun that they can share. Because they’re very personalized and location specific, Geofilters are fantastic tools for promoting new products or events your credit union may be taking part in. Let’s say your credit union is sponsoring a 5K and you want to set one up for people to interact with while they’re at the event. All you need to do is design a small graphic that’s customized for your 5K, go to the Geofilters section of and draw a geofence around your exact location. Select how long you want to run your Geofilter, and Snapchat will then determine your price estimate. Costs vary of course, but generally speaking, they’re very affordable. Here’s one that The Tennessee Credit Union created for their Annual Meeting. They then posted it in Instagram for some great cross promotion.

Launch a Snap Ads Campaign

These also come with a price tag, and it can vary to a wide degree. But Snapchat claims that its Snap to Store feature allows advertisers to directly track how many people go to your Credit Union after seeing your Snap Ad, which is a valuable feature. And if you’re wondering how Snap Ads work, they’re basically mobile video ads with an interactive element that can include traditional commercials, games, contest promotions and more.

Snap Ads can also link to locations outside the app, such as to your new loan products on your credit union’s website. And one of the biggest benefits they have to offer is that unlike other social media outlets, users expect… and even welcome… sound. This is in contrast to a platform like Facebook, where most users dislike audio.


Since its launch in 2011, Snapchat has grown to over 166 million daily users, many of whom are millennials or members of GenZ. Nearly 50% are young adults who are over the age of 25 and ready to forge a relationship with a credit union. This is a valuable market of young users and influencers to harness, and utilizing these creative ideas can build interest that helps your credit union’s membership grow. Don’t avoid Snapchat, embrace it.