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Conversion Tactics for Non-Profit Organizations
Humans have always used storytelling to communicate. From cave paintings to modern marketing, people have told stories to get messages across. Businesses use stories to connect with the hearts and minds of audiences. Nowhere is storytelling more effective than for non-profit organizations.

Storytelling for Nonprofits

When it comes to nonprofit website design and development, storytelling has to be at the centre of the process. When your objective is to build meaningful connections with donors and turn them into lifelong supporters of your organization, you have to tell stories that resonate with them. The best way to capture audience members at every stage of their journey is to leverage storytelling when applying nonprofit website best practices.

The use of stories helps potential donors develop a connection between the donation and the actual outcome of the donation. Telling stories through the use of media builds donor loyalty and encourages repeat donations. This all seems like common sense, but what many organizations lack is the implementation of storytelling in the design and development process.

Nonprofit Website Design

Storytelling doesn’t just stop at content. The use of this strategy involves its use across the entire digital project. Effective nonprofit websites are designed to guide the user through a story, eventually leading them to the call to action for a donation. Some visitors may arrive at the website ready to donate, but others may have just discovered the organization and want to learn more. By assisting them through the journey using storytelling, you can capture any prospect and move them down the funnel.

Most non-profit organizations have a foundation that raises funds to support the actual activities of the nonprofit. For many such organizations, this means the creation of two separate digital properties for fundraising and activities. This is where storytelling design for nonprofits comes into play. Separating the activities, events, and stories from the fundraising will create a disconnect between donations and outcomes. By weaving stories between the two digital properties, organizations can boost engagement and increase donations.

Tell the Right Story

Non-profit organizations have to leverage design best practices to tell stories the right way. Take a non-profit sports organization for example. This organization might be looking for donations to assist their sports programs at all levels. They may be encouraging youth to join sports, or they may be engaging with adults to join their programs. A sports organization can tell the story of an athlete that joined their programs at a young age and built a sports career into adulthood. This story would resonate with their entire audience - but if their foundation website exists independently of the sports website, they would lose a significant portion of their audience that could become donors.

Taking a user through the storytelling journey is the same as taking them through a buying journey. A visitor may start on the website by looking for information about a sporting event, then click on an athlete to learn about their story. This is where the foundation comes into play. By telling the story of the foundation’s involvement in the athlete’s success, the sports organization could build a connection between the visitor and the foundation. An effective story can capture the hearts and minds of the audience, leading to a new donor for the foundation, and capitalizing on every opportunity.

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Chris is OPIN's resident marketing scientist. Obsessed with testing and tweaking, he is constantly uncovering new patterns. His obsession with testing helps the agency gain insights for internal marketing campaigns and client projects. His unconventional methods help our readers look at business and marketing concepts in new ways.