Mobilize Donors in Digital


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My presentation at the 2014 Blue North Summit on using Digital Storytelling to mobilize and activate donors.

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Mobilize Donors in Digital

  1. 1. Mobilize Donors in Digital The Power of Storytelling May 7, 2014 by Sean Howard as seen at the Blue North Summit 1
  2. 2. 2 “Interruptive marketing with no perceived value is
 increasingly ignored or avoided by consumers.” - Justin Kirby, Best of Branded Content Marketing
  3. 3. 3 Image source:
  4. 4. 4 The future of online giving is tied to telling stories that matter.
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  12. 12. 12 1. Get your digital priorities straight
  13. 13. 13 Technologies are going extinct at a never before seen rate
  14. 14. 14 An app will not save you.
  15. 15. 15It’s about integrating digital into your organization
  16. 16. 16Size Matters, but… Reach in social is constrained by the strength of our relationships
  17. 17. 17 Thus the value of our digital investment is defined by our capacity to engage our followers Follow / fan Consume / like Engage / share Activate / mobilize
  18. 18. 18 Thus the value of our digital investment is defined by our capacity to engage our followers Is what we say interesting? Are we relevant? What does our content say about the sharer? Follow / fan Consume / like Engage / share Activate / mobilizeHow much do I care?
  19. 19. 19 This is the least effective revenue generating tool on the Internet. No matter how you dress it up.
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  23. 23. 23It’s About the Content Everyone thinks about where to be online and how their logo appears When it’s the content that people engage with, not the logo.
  24. 24. 24 2. Focus on content that matters to your audience.
  25. 25. Donor fatigue (give us money, give us money, give us money, etc.) Lack of dedicated digital resources Organization not in the business of creating content Repurposing of other content is generally not a viable strategy 25Key Challenges
  26. 26. 26 Full report link:
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  29. 29. 29 Our Mandate Audience Interests We have a publishing problem
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  31. 31. 31 Live Orchestral Music
  32. 32. 32 sports classical studies live music festivals rock concerts bollywood movies world history Live Orchestral Music high school
  33. 33. 33 sports classical studies live music festivals rock concerts bollywood movies world history Live Orchestral Music high school
 band Raptors in the playoffs TSO had success with arrangements in the past Rapper Drake known for support of TO/Raptors
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  37. 37. Content calendars are not a content strategy They can be a useful tool but are prone to mindless content 37Content Calendars
  38. 38. 38Content Calendars
  39. 39. Wonderful presentation on story streams vs. content calendars 
 by Jon Crowley and Jeremy Wright 39Story Streams
  40. 40. 40Story Streams Blocking Charts Create framework for future content Align on priorities and number of posts per story stream
  41. 41. 41Story Streams Core Mandate Supporting Beliefs Story Streams Story Streams Story Streams Supporting Beliefs Actors / Voices Actors / Voices Actors / Voices Story Streams
  42. 42. 42Story Streams Support Dollars at Work 40% Key Events 20% Founding Values 10% Behind the Scenes 10% Impact Stories 20%
  43. 43. Make it matter! Our audiences are trained to filter out the noise. Be able to pitch the benefits of an initiative in 5 words or less. 43When we do talk about ourselves
  44. 44. 44 Trees so you can breathe!
  45. 45. 45 Help a child in need
  46. 46. 46 Remember how to be human
  47. 47. 47 3. Expand and extend the stories we tell.
  48. 48. Greenpeace put out a whitepaper titled “Top 5 tips for actions that mobilize online” based on a workshop on what they learned in 2013 Full report: 48Greenpeace tips
  49. 49. Suspense / Jeopardy Too often we wait until after an action has succeeded to communicate the results. We lose the opportunity to build suspense. What risks do we face? What is difficult about this initiative? Not all initiatives should be successful. There should be a sense of jeopardy. How can you take the event and extend it forward in time? 49Greenpeace tips
  50. 50. Personal Stories Who is involved in the initiative? Can I relate to them? What drives the people involved? Why are they doing this? What other voices can we highlight? The affected? The volunteers? The community? It should be about “ordinary people doing extraordinary things.” 50Greenpeace tips
  51. 51. Interact - Make It Collective Involve your audience in the story! Have many ways to get involved - not just donations. Can they volunteer? Sign a petition? Send messages of support to the people affected or involved? Can they engage with key supporters? Can they participate from home? Push for solidarity. 51Greenpeace tips
  52. 52. Make it Long It takes time for a story to gain traction and for people to join in and share it. Begin the story well in advance of the initiative. Continue the story after the initiative is over. What are the results? Check back in on the initiative. 52Greenpeace tips
  53. 53. 53 3. Expand and extend the stories we tell. Recap 1. Get your digital priorities straight 2. Focus on content that matters to your audience.
  54. 54. WORKSHOP 54
  55. 55. Start on the back of the worksheet. Write down two to three initiatives your organization has recently completed or is working on that you believe would be of interest to your audience Pick one and write it down on the top of the worksheet Write a pitch for this initiative in 5 words or less Be sure to answer “WHY SHOULD WE CARE?” 555 minutes
  56. 56. Greenpeace framework Identify how you can expand and extend the stories you can tell around the initiative you selected List each idea you come up with in the appropriate box 568-10 minutes
  57. 57. Share and support one another Pitch your idea to your table (in 5 words or less) Then give one example of how you could extend or expand the story of this initiative 578 minutes
  58. 58. Sean Howard The Connected Brand 647 272 9361 58