Great Storytelling Tips for Effective Giving Tuesday Campaigns

Giving Tuesday is quickly approaching and storytelling—great storytelling always plays centerstage!

So, what makes for a good story?

How can you ensure your organization tells a great one?

Having won a few awards for our ability to tell a good story, here’s our storytelling strategy.

Set a goal or intention for the story

Write or create with the end in mind. What do you want people to do after engaging with your content? Since we’re talking about Giving Tuesday, spurring donations is the obvious answer. We want people to be inspired to give. But you also might want them to share the story once they’ve given or follow you on your social media channels. Those are valid intentions as well. Your primary goal for this campaign is securing the donation and the secondary goal is to connect.

Determine the best character to tell the story, Ron Lach

This could be a past donor, a recipient of your service, or a member of your organization. Who can deliver the strongest story that will help you reach your goal? Because here’s the truth, we connect with stories that make us feel something strongly. So a passionate story that stirs up righteous indignation, or moves us to tears is the story you want to tell. Always from a respectful place. Always from a truthful place. Make the audience feel something.

Balance your service with the dignity of those you serve

One of the things we’re often asked to do is to show an organization’s service to a community and retain the humanity and dignity of the people being served. In other words, no white savior stories. If you’re new to the phrase “white saviorism” in fundraising seeks to make the giver feel good about themselves, and reinforce feelings of superiority. The recipients of the service and donation are often held in contempt and viewed as less than.

Millennials are changing the face of philanthropy and so are Gen Z donors. These groups tend to shun racial and social inequities and support businesses and causes that align with their beliefs. With these groups positioned for a substantial wealth transfer, nonprofits who can tell equitable stories stand to benefit from these generous donors.

Be creative and remember your audience

Social media platforms like TikTok, Snapchat, and Instagram have taught us that you can convey a great story in 60 seconds or less! As much as we enjoy producing videos, you don’t always need a major production to tell a great story.

And always remember your audience. You’re creating these stories to connect with them in order to achieve your initial goal. So understand where they congregate, how they like their information, and what motivates them. Effective and compelling stories can be told with:

  • Videos (long and short)
  • Memes
  • Fun challenges
  • Well-planned email campaigns
  • Games/Simulations

Understanding your audience can unlock new ways your organization shows up for this year’s Giving Tuesday and help you tell an amazing story.

Wishing you the best!

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