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How to gather, write & publish your donor stories


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Presented via CAGP Webinar, February 27, 2013

Presented via CAGP Webinar, February 27, 2013

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  • 1. How to gather, write and publish your donor stories Leah Eustace, CFREPrincipal & Chief Idea Goddess @LeahEustace
  • 2. Why stories are awesome…• Keep the reader’s attention• Help you communicate better• Enhance your credibility• Linger longer• Get passed along• Raise more money!
  • 3. Gathering stories
  • 4. Look… and listen• Listen to what’s being said around the water cooler• What’s your founder story?• Talk to people on the front lines• Think about your own story…• Attend your charity’s events• Keep an eye on the blogs• At the end of every day ask yourself “what happened today that would make a good story?”
  • 5. Extend an invitation
  • 6. Pay close attention
  • 7. Always be prepared
  • 8. Conducting an interview
  • 9. Preparing your interviewee
  • 10. Preparing yourself
  • 11. Tips and tricks
  • 12. What to ask• Why dont you start by telling me a little bit about yourself• How did you come to be involved in [charity]?• What role does [charity] play… what sets it apart from other charities?• What impresses you most about [charity]?• Tell me about a particular person youve met, or a program youve been involved with (or a story youve read) involving [charity’s] work that has stood out for you
  • 13. What to ask• Do you remember when you first heard of [charity] and under what circumstances it was?• What prompted your first gift to [charity]?• Where does your philanthropic spirit come from? What values were you brought up with?• What led you to consider a bequest?• What do you hope your bequest will help accomplish?
  • 14. What to ask• What difference do you hope [charity] will have made when you look 25 or 50 years into the future?• Why should people consider leaving a bequest to [charity]?• If you had an opportunity to speak to other donors who were considering a bequest, what would you say to them?
  • 15. Probe• Walk me through…• Paint a picture of…• How old are…?• What is that person’s name?• How did that make you feel?• What’s it like to…?• What went through your mind when…?• How did you react to…?• What hurdles did you face when…?
  • 16. The last best question Is there anything else you’d like to add that we haven’t touched on?
  • 17. What’s next?
  • 18. Writing
  • 19. Components of a great story With thanks to Mark Phillips
  • 20. Think about the end product
  • 21. Involving the donor in the process
  • 22. The end product? A work of art Download at
  • 23. Thank you! Leah Eustace, CFREPrincipal & Chief Idea Goddess Good Works @LeahEustace