Fundraise Smarter

Using Storytelling to Increase Monthly Giving & Memberships

Posted by Scott Mathews on Apr 23, 2019 11:00:00 AM

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The Story

When it comes to reaching out to people in order to raise awareness and attract new members or sponsors, one could argue that social media platforms represent a powerful medium between you and your audience. Nevertheless, billions of Facebook and Instagram users are just a crowd of people who like fast information. this gives you a chance to make your story heard.

For most, story telling played a significant role in our childhood. In school, most kids remember information better if they receive it through a story than as a simple fact, according to scientists. The same research shows that our brain activity proves higher when we listen to a story, and it’s also easier to connect to other people and feel empathy through storytelling. So how can you transfer such a compelling technique to increase monthly giving at your non-profit?

Provide a solution

As people read your story and connect with the mission of your organization, it's important to provide a clear solution to the problem you that your mission aims to fix. Make sure to adjust your narrative so the audience would like to see themselves as a part of the driving force behind the solution to the issue at hand. Furthermore, it is of utmost importance that you make it clear, even if you have to create a step by step explanation of how the readers can become part of the resolution.

Cliffhangers

The oldest trick in the book, one would say, but it is rooted in accurate data. Scientific research shows that people have a natural inclination towards completing nearly finished activities even if they don't have to. If your story ends with a closure that puts the audience in a dilemma, then you have a much higher chance of having them back for the sequel, and sharing your content with their networks. Organic shares are also a highly valuable asset that can increase your traffic and conversion ratio.

Keeping the story balanced

It’s important to stress the urgency of your cause, and the necessity to act fast, however, stories can convey a powerful message without being too dark and gloomy. No matter how empathetic a person might be, too much of the heavy stuff can cause discomfort, unease, and even stop the viewer from reaching the end of your storyline, which could lead to losing a potential donor.

On the opposite side, if your story is too joyful, full of happy endings, and problems that resolve by thinking positive thoughts than your audience could get the feeling that your cause is not that alarming and you don't need immediate support. Find the balance between the light and dark, show the urgency, show alarming data, but make sure to leave room for some joy as a result of good people reaching out to help.

Providing context

Laying down the facts that concern your nonprofit organization doesn't mean those facts will mean anything to a potential donor who is not yet aware of what those facts and numbers mean. Crafting a story that depicts the real-life influence of the information that you wish to share will attract more people and make it easier for them to connect with your concerns and take action.

Be mindful of the quality of the content

The quality of your story includes the complexity of the storyline, the depth of the characters, and finally – the moral of your story. However, spelling and grammar are also an important factor that determines the quality of your work. According to some sources, poor grammar and spelling blunders distract the reader, disabling them from focusing on what really matters. There are online services like Uk.bestessays.com, AustralianWritings, Paperwritingpro.com, Pro Essay Writing, and many others that could proofread the content for you until it’s spotless.

Find inspiration in real people and events

We are social beings and deep down inside we care about each other, feel empathy, and understand personal tragedies, as well as happiness. Instead of creating a fictional story, seek out a person that you know has a story that people would connect with. More importantly, find a person who can tell you a story that will inspire people to reach out to you, learn more about that person and potentially provide help with your activities.

Don’t try to “sell”

Remember that your story is about real people and real-life events that have an actual human value. If you decide to go with too much of the technical terminology and keep pushing the audience into facts and figures, constantly trying to sell, then the audience will have a difficult time connecting to what they find challenging to understand. It’s not that hard to recognize that most of us relate easier to a story about a person in a desperate situation than feeling sorry about the percentage of “low-income individuals”, “underdeveloped regions”, or “average number of children without proper education”. Create an honest, human story – don’t be a salesperson.

Conclusion

Stories have kept people close since the beginning of time. They make us feel that there is hope and good in people. They also teach us that there is a lot of darkness in the world and we need to fight together to stop it from spreading. Storytelling allows you to trigger human imagination and make them see and feel what you are trying to express. Make every word count!

Author Bio:

Scott Mathews is a freelance content writer and human rights activist who is dedicated to sharing his experience and knowledge with others in order to make the world a better place. He is currently engaged as a writer for Assignment Masters and Ninja Essays. The satisfaction of his clients and readers is best portrayed in the academized review article.

Topics: recurring donations, monthly giving, Development, membership program, nonprofit membership program, Donations

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