Using Crowdsourcing to Generate Stories For Your Nonprofit

Philip Manzano • Oct 15, 2016

Your nonprofit interacts with different people in different ways every single day. Reaching out to your contacts to share their stories through crowdsourcing can uncover meaningful content you didn’t even know to ask about. The post Using Crowdsourcing to Generate Stories For Your Nonprofit appeared first on Keela.

Guest Author: Jen Sguigna,

Juno Beach Foundation

No matter what the goals of your organization, stories are key. Stories can help to justify your cause and to attract donors. They can serve as cornerstones for fundraising campaigns and to give your organization a human face.  

But what if you don’t have any stories?

The best way to find stories is the easiest way – ask your audience, your community, your donors. These are the people you’re trying to connect with, so why not tell their stories?

This could happen in a number of ways, depending on your resources and circumstances. The easiest thing to do is to issue a call for stories in any newsletter or publication that you release.  Whether your collecting stories to meet the mandate of a specific project or just using them for an overhaul in your marketing technique, use a catchy headline that invites the community to engage with you on a deeper level. For example:

  • “Help us change the face of our organization.”
  • “We want to hear your stories!”

Make it simple to share stories. Allow them to do it in any way they choose. Emails, social media, over the phone, video submissions – keep all channels open.

What kind of stories do you want? Really it depends on your goals, but here are some questions you can ask: 

  • Why do you connect to our cause? 
  • Do they have a personal connection or story that inspires empathy? 
  • Has your organization impacted or changed their life in some way? 
  • Why do they believe in what you do?

If you’re lucky, you may be able to connect with an individual donor that is willing to share their incredible story at a fundraising event or through normal correspondence. Simply asking people, “What motivated you to donate today?” can help unearth these stories – and provide you information on the best stories to use otherwise!

Once you have the stories, what do you do with them?

You can feature snippets of stories on social media or refer to them when you speak publicly in any context. You can share them on your website or feature a story in each issue of your newsletter. If fundraising is a main priority, use the stories to connect with other donors. Everybody wants something they can relate to, and stories can give them just that. Choose the “best” stories to use as the narratives in marketing and promotional materials, or, if you’re particularly lucky, those individuals may be in a place to become volunteer spokespeople for your organization (but be sure that you have permission to use names and images of individuals before doing so!).

First and foremost, people connect with things that they can relate to. Human stories can help your audience relate to your cause.  You can talk for hours about why you  think what you do is important, but being able to talk about why everyone else thinks it’s important will significantly increase your impact. 

Guest Blogging with Keela!

Interested in contributing to our blog? We love including voices from the sector. Feel free to get in touch with us at  blog@networksforchange.org  with your topic.

The post Using Crowdsourcing to Generate Stories For Your Nonprofit appeared first on Keela.