Snapchat’s taking a new approach to promoting its TikTok-like Spotlight feed, by partnering with Kim Kardashian West and family to launch a new ‘acts of kindness’ initiative, which calls on Snapchat creators to share their own acts of kindness via Spotlight clips for a share in $100,000 in prize money.
As explained by Snapchat:
“Starting today, Snapchatters can join Kim and Kris in submitting Snaps of their acts of kindness to Spotlight - whether it’s making someone a homemade meal, cleaning up your community, or simply surprising your loved ones with some unprompted compliments. Creators globally have a chance to receive a share of the millions per month we make available for the top Spotlight Snaps. And for Snapchatters in the US, submit to the Spotlight #KindnessChallenge via the Spotlight Trending Page showing how you spread joy by surprising a loved one with a compliment or random act of kindness for the chance to win a share of $100,000 USD!”
The initiative aims to help boost Spotlight take-up and increase positivity coming into the end of the year, which could be a good option, considering the largely negative news stories over the previous 12 months.
As Snapchat notes, it already has a funding program in place to incentivize Spotlight clips, which initially started at $1 million per day, divided between the top-performing clips, but has since been revised down to ‘millions per month’. That change sparked a level of frustration among Spotlight creators, some of whom had come to rely on the funding, but the program, overall, has helped to boost take-up of the option, which has seen a steady increase in uploads and views over the past year.
Indeed, Snapchat reported back in April that 125 million people were viewing Spotlight content every month (Snap has 306 million daily active users in total), while in October, Snap reported that daily Spotlight uploads had more than doubled, quarter-over-quarter.
This new push is another effort to boost interest in the option, and with broader engagement with short-form video on the rise, it could be a good way for Snap to maximize the format, heading into the holiday period.
Interestingly, Snapchat has also shared some new parameters around how it will look to select the clips that receive a share of its Spotlight funding.
Back in October, Snapchat added ‘Spotlight Challenges’ into the mix, which enables Snap to set specific activities and elements that users can film in their Spotlight clips, in order to improve their chances of winning a share of the Spotlight cash.
Now, Snap’s outlining some additional safety considerations around these clips:
“Unlike “challenges” on other platforms, Snap’s Spotlight editorial team curates each Spotlight Challenge. The team is focused on amplifying those trends that are positive, inclusive, creative, and engaging as opposed to those that are harmful.”
That’s a direct shot at the controversy around some of TikTok’s challenges, including the ‘Milk Crate Challenge’, which have lead to injuries and harm among participants.
Essentially, Snap’s trying to implement a level of supervision over the content that users share in the app, by making its Spotlight funding contingent on these measures. That doesn’t stop users from uploading whatever they want, but if you also want to be eligible for a cut of its funding, you’ll need to adhere to safety considerations.
Overall, the push looks to make Spotlight a more positive, uplifting content experience, which could help to make it more appealing to Snap users, further increasing engagement. And maybe, that will then keep more Snap users from migrating to TikTok instead, if Snap can provide a more entertaining and enriching content feed.
Snapchat’s Spotlight Challenges are available to users in the US, while Snap notes that more markets will be able to take part ‘in the following months’.