MAKING PERSONAL CONNECTION THROUGH STORIES

Sonia Apondi
4 min readDec 6, 2020
Image by Pamelagrow.com

When we hear a story, we instinctively immerse ourselves within the narrative. We visualize what the speaker is saying. We empathize with the characters and picture ourselves as a part of the story. Any communication with a story-like structure is memorable and can make a superb difference in your campaign. Each campaign creates emotions to an audience and encourage action to donate funds.

Have we ever thought of why individuals are visual creatures? I recently learned that folks connect with an impression through an impact made through compelling imagery. What you capture within the minds of potential donors will determine how they’re going to perceive your story. People are sensitive to what we share online for their consumption.

Due to this, fundraising and non-profit marketing professionals need to capture their supporters’ attention, educate them about their cause, and encourage them to get more involved. They have mastered the art of storytelling and social media through talking about those they serve with the intent to inspire action and motivation.

They highlight short stories on social media, and saving in-depth stories for email newsletters. The aim of this is to possess an individual reference with the audience and set goals. A number of the goals are: raise money, help donors understand a new challenge, thank donors for their impact, inspire loyalty, and grow trust.

Story telling plays a dominant role in developing brands for charities. They’re ready to use effective stories to motivate supporters to offer however they can, whether it’s through donations or volunteerism. It can be anything from supporters expressing personal connections to your cause in peer-to-peer campaigns to staff members telling first-hand stories about the great work your organization does.

This is something I resonate with at my workplace. Working with women and the youth have been an awesome experience for me. Some of the stories that struck me the most were testimonials from the ladies sharing how their lives have transformed completely through the trainings they receive i.e. Business Skills, Bookkeeping, Human rights, Leadership Skills, Personal development and Nutrition and Reproductive health. The women noted that, after the trainings they were able to apply for loans from the organization to boost their businesses. They have also applied the knowledge and skills acquired to run their businesses. In addition, they’re able to educate their children, provide for their families and take up leadership positions within their communities.

My oh my! once you empower a woman, you empower a family, a community and indeed a nation — Cherie Blair.

It shows supporters the change you’re creating immediate results of their help. It invokes a requirement of urgency by telling readers how they will make a difference immediately. By sharing various perspectives from volunteers, staff members, and even those that enjoy your work, you emphasize how what proportion donors’ gifts help.

We are also living during a world where technology has proven to evolve around everything we do like organizing online fundraising platforms for charitable organizations. The facility of the web has proved that it can be immensely successful when it involves charitable fundraising. Internet and social media has been beneficial to Non- profits and Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) to share their impact stories, videos, articles and awareness campaign to a bigger audience.

Charitable organizations are ready to share a targeted amount for a selected project while requesting for funds on online platforms like Global giving fund, Go Fund me, Crowdfunding and Just Give me.org among others. This results to a fantastic amounts of cash being generated for a variety of worthy causes for various projects to be held.

It’s also important to notice that online story telling goes beyond words but including subtitles on videos for viewers on social media to attach together with your transformation story.

Developing an efficient story for charitable organizations involves:

Goodman outlines the following:

The nature of our challenge story which describes the matter that you are simply trying to handle alongside your programs/services. Non-profits use this art to enable those outside of their organizations understand what they are doing, by talking about what they do by illustrating the challenge.

Creation story: demonstrates the “how we started” story. “It’s primarily for internal use,” This story shares why it had been started and when it had was started.

The emblematic success story: Answers whether you’re having an impact. This story, primarily for external use, is that the story says “yes” but also that your organization makes a difference in a specific way that’s exceptional. This story shares your distinctive approach and why it works.

The values story: These are stories through which your organization shows how it lives its core values. Many organizations have an equivalent set of core values ,collaboration, integrity and respect, etc. — so to be irreplaceable you need to explain how your organization specifically lives into those values and expresses those values.

Striving to enhance your story: This story is for internal use and says “sometimes we fall short, sometimes we outright fail, but we always learn from our mistakes and do better next time. These stories are healthy for internal culture — they’re the stories that you simply use to point out empathy.

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