Storytelling

“If history were taught in the form of stories, it would never be forgotten.”
Rudyard Kipling

Hans Christian Andersen, Central Park, NY

Storytelling is one of the most ancient forms of art. No matter how the story is told, the conveyance of some personal happening, human feeling or fundamental of life is something that everyone is drawn to and is relatable. The best storytellers capitalize on these basics to spark the listeners’ interest and bring them into their world.

 If you are wanting to bring in new supporters to your organization or re-ignite passion in your current supporters, there are some pointers you can take. Whether you decide to go for a typical written story, a “photo-mentary”, or a video-log on YouTube, you can take these ideas and add some flavor to your website, newsletter, and blog. People have so many things vying for their attention that press releases and mundane announcements get lost in the shuffle. Liven things up with some of the following:

  • If your organization has been around for a while (and even if it hasn’t), consider giving a quick but comprehensive history of how it got started. This can open the door for discussion on the major obstacles you faced and how you overcame them.
  • Interview your staff. Ask them about themselves and why they chose to get involved with your organization. Don’t stop there, you can create a montage of quotes and photos of volunteers who come faithfully.
  • What about a particular success story? Testimonials are a great way to bring your cause closer to someone’s heart.
  • If you are working on a particular project, follow it with frequent updates. For example, you are holding a week-long camp for children with disabilities. Catalog the highlights of each day and include photographs.
  • When you have a special event with lots of guests coming through, try setting up a “photo booth.” This is easily done with a black or colored backdrop and a camera on a stand. Invite your guests to stop in for some fun and quirky pictures and provide a book for them to log their names and comments about the event. Then, set up an online photo album or on Facebook with the comments under the pictures.

People want to know that you are real and care about them and why they should/are supporting you. Providing a face to attach to the organization and another way for them to interact with you will make them much more than an interested person or a donor; they will become a supporter and partner, integrated more closely with your organization.

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2 Responses

  1. […] Storytelling (cdpsblog.wordpress.com) […]

  2. […] a newsletter, email, Facebook and thank-you letters. For more on storytelling, check out this entry on our […]

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