May 27, 2011
By: Tierney Smith
Editor's Note: Cuso International is registered with TechSoup Canada. We are highlighting their work with digital storytelling as part of our "Sharing Your Story" theme for June 2011.
While the emergence of new technologies and social media networks has made it easier than ever to find your audience, it has also complicated the process by which nonprofits plan campaigns and strategies. With so much content available, people are turning away from lackluster content and searching for something more. But what are they looking for?
If you're going to work more effectively with images and don't already have an image-editing tool, you might consider Adobe Photoshop Elements and Premiere Elements. This newly updated image- and video-editing bundle runs on Windows machines or Macs, and is now available to eligible nonprofits, charities, and libraries through TechSoup Canada.
A trauma hospital in war-torn Syria seems an unlikely spot to be posting about your day on Facebook. Yet that’s exactly what Canadian doctor Anne Marie Pegg did for Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) on International Women’s Day with the help of staff in its Canadian office.
We spent the month of April talking about digital storytelling, and I’ve been struck by the many different and creative ways that nonprofits are using video, photos and other online tools & channels to share stories. In this post I wanted to share a few of my favourite examples that I’ve come across.
There’s nothing like a story to get your message across. When I’m trying to understand what a nonprofit does, I find mission statements are often vague and hard to understand, and numbers on their own are dry and lifeless. It’s stories that really paint a picture of what you do and of the change you are bringing about - whether you’re reaching out to someone who’s never heard about you, or to one of your most dedicated donors.
A lot of non-profits are a bit intimidated by the idea of venturing into the video world, primarily due to fears about the cost. You don't have to hire a production studio, and you don't have to rent or buy expensive equipment. You can actually do it for no money at all! Here's how.
If we compare the two phrases, “Hear John's story on our website” or “go to the website and check out our stats”, which of the two is more likely to encourage you to go to the organization's website? The first one, right? The most compelling stories are those that appeal to emotion: those that are told from the heart, rather than a fact sheet.