2 Insights for Telling Better Nonprofit Stories in 2014: Part II of II

Be sure to read Part I: Collaborative Storytelling before continuing to Part II.

No. 2  Activist Storytelling

Social media enables your supporters to shape the outcome of a mission story that has real-world effects.

Conspiracy For Good, for example, weaves in real-life scenarios with fiction. Created by Tim Kring, the producer of NBC’s hit show Heroes, the narrative ripples across social media, online games, outdoor advertising and live performances. The goal is to have participants shape the narrative through real-life behavior that actually benefits charities.

Don’t believe me? The initiative helped build and stock five libraries in Africa, while funding as many as 50 scholarships for schoolgirls.

Here’s the point: Your organization doesn’t need the production power of NBC. This method can turn a short-term challenge into a story line and cast your supporters as the heroes so they can achieve real life outcomes and advance your mission.

Your Next Steps

Start drawing a map of your supporters’ journey.  Here’s how:

  1. The challenge: Describe your initiative on a YouTube channel or website.
    • Example: In an effort to enroll new graduates as members, an alumni organization wants to show how its elder alumni have flourished thanks to their degree.
  2. Call to action: If a supporter accepts, ask them to contribute through social media.
    • Example: “Provide a photo of something in your life that wouldn’t have been possible without college and a few words why.”
  3. Ending:  Promote a virtual event on Facebook, where people can see the resolution.
    • Example: Supporters and students receive an email that prompts them to a YouTube video with a wonderful montage, featuring these stories. It then reminds them that great things are in store for their future.

More important: your online community can inspire others through a powerful narrative.


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