How to Make Them Care: Inspire Donors Through Storytelling

With every marketing piece that we encounter—an email on our phone, an envelope in our mailbox, a post on our Facebook wall—we ask, Is this worth my time?

The fact that you’re reading these words implies that you likely did all the following: Opened an email or stumbled upon a social media post from The Stelter Company; skimmed the headline, possibly the preview text; and, ultimately, felt compelled to read to this point.

Do your donors get this far with your marketing pieces?

A good story can help.

A reminder about stories: Studies show that people feel most compelled to help when presented with a situation we feel we can impact.

So rather than telling about the 250 students that require scholarships to attend your institution each year, share the story of a single student whose life was transformed by the generosity of a donor. Allow your donors to see themselves in the hero of your story.

Summon Your Inner Journalist

This effort assumes a critical point: That you know what motivates your donors. Like a true journalist, you must seek answers before you start telling:

  • How are your donors wired?
  • What triggers them to stand up and be counted?
  • What pulls at their heartstrings?
  • What keeps them up at night?

Knowing the answers to these questions allows you to drive a strong fundraising narrative. Now, scroll to discover our infographic on how to use this knowledge to weave together a story that inspires.

the path to a great story


Bonus: Free Webinar on Storytelling!
In “The Future of Storytelling,” Professor John D. Trybus (Managing Director at Georgetown University’s Center for Social Impact Communication) reveals what’s going to change in storytelling, what won’t and why it matters. Plus, learn a simple framework for creating stories that lead your donors to take action for your organization.

3 thoughts on “How to Make Them Care: Inspire Donors Through Storytelling

Leave a Reply