Capturing Donors With Storytelling!
We continue the conversation around nonprofit marketing and storytelling in Part Two of our conversation with Jennifer Henderson.
Jennifer is a Marketing Communications Specialist with more than twenty years of experience. She’s the Founder and President of J.O. Agency, a full-service marketing, advertising, and public relations agency in Fort Worth, Texas. She’s also the Executive Director of The Cause Agency, whose mission is to promote and empower the work of nonprofit organizations by providing marketing services.
Missed our last chat with Jennifer? Click here for Part One on amplifying the missions and stories of nonprofits.
If you have someone that is waving your flag, find a way to use them. And ask if they would do your organization a favor and try to storytell for you through their eyes. Then that’s golden too. It’s that word-of-mouth that is priceless.
Welcome to Amplify:
Welcome to Amplify with White Knight Productions. I’m your host, Gavin Tice. At White Knight, we’re all about amplifying voices through storytelling. And in this series, we’ll be connecting with industry professionals who know how to boost messages far and wide. Today, we’re excited to speak with Jennifer Henderson about amplifying the missions and stories of non-profit organizations.
Statistics and data definitely serve a purpose. But when it comes to impressing donors, storytelling is really what catches their attention. Can you expand a little bit on that?
Storytelling is always vital. You know, testimonials are phenomenal. Usually, those are the most authentic types of storytelling. And so, if you can really tell what your organization does through the eyes of your clients, then you’ve done a great job.
Some of our favorite video projects have been with our nonprofit clients, and we’ve seen how video can make an impact. But we’re curious to hear about your experience and how you’ve seen video play a role in raising awareness and increasing donations.
The saying goes… “A picture’s worth a thousand words.” Well, moving pictures are really worth 1.8 million words. But retelling a story over video is, to me, the best way because that’s what resonates. You can see emotion. It’s easier to understand and easier to remember. So, video is the way to go. And I see a trend right now where non-profits and even for-profits are creating mini documentaries about their company or about their nonprofit.
Could you expand a little more on that?
I started seeing this a couple of years ago when I went to some film festivals in Dallas. And the ones that resonated with me were the ones that were about non-profits. And they blew me away. I mean, they were cinematic. They were filmed beautifully. They captured my attention. But they weren’t so long that they bored me. But I never forgot those.
And I tell ya, if that’s the way non-profits are moving, I can foresee non-profits really putting a big amount of their budget in video rather than direct mail appeals or annual reports. If you can make an impact with an amazingly-produced feature film that’s thirty minutes long or even twenty minutes long, then I think that’s going to resonate more with their audience, and hopefully, increase the donor dollar.
And Jennifer, is there any final advice that you can share with us about how non-profits can amplify their message?
You know, I’m old school; I love public relations and finding a good journalist that loves telling the story. Third-party endorsements through journalism is eight times more believable than anything else, anything paid, anything that you send out. If you can get a good article written on you, if a good blogger with lots of followers could tell your story, then that’s going to be believable and that’s going to stick with the reader. They’re going to, hopefully, find interest in what you’re doing and want to learn more.
You know, influencers—unpaid influencers. And what I mean by that is, if you have someone that is waving your flag, find a way to use them. And ask if they would do your organization a favor and try to storytell for you through their eyes. Then that’s golden too. It’s that word-of-mouth that is priceless.
To learn more about Jennifer and her non-profit organization, visit thecauseagency.org. And to hear more insider scoops on how to amplify your story, be sure to follow White Knight Productions on your preferred social media for updates on future episodes.
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Catch up on previous episodes of our series.