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Importance of Highlighting Donor Stories

The importance of highlighting donor stories on your planned giving website is paramount. Whether your focus is planned giving, current giving or general fundraising, storytelling will always remain important. Effectively telling a donor’s story is one key aspect to consider when creating your website or building your program. The purpose of donor stories is to inspire others to share their experience and support your organization’s mission. Sharing donor stories helps encourage giving and create a meaningful connection.

How the gift works and its benefits

Donor stories illustrate how creating a planned gift is a great experience that will truly make an impact on your organization and the causes they support. This will help potential supporters recognize that other people in similar situations are involved in planned giving. It is crucial that the donor stories clearly explain how the gift works and what benefits are available to the prospective donor. Highlighting the benefits will demonstrate the value of fulfilling a planned gift.

Resources and contact us

At the end of the story, you should provide resources so the donor can learn more. You can do this by including your contact information, so they can easily follow up if needed, one way is to add a hyperlink to your Contact Us webpage. Another example would be to include a hyperlink to your sample bequest language page for a Bequest related donor story. This allows the donor to learn more and shows them how easy it is to incorporate a bequest in their will or trust.

Direct quotes and visuals

It is powerful to add direct quotes from the donor within the story. This can be accomplished by interviewing the donor and gathering information prior to beginning to write. If the donor approves, we always recommend including a picture of them or their family. This will provide the reader with an accompanying visual that can help them personally relate to the story. If you have videos about your donors telling their stories, videos are a great way to create emotional appeal.

Emotional connection

Adding donor stories to your website will not only educate but evoke an emotional response. These emotions will create a connection between the reader and the donor, which is a major first step. If the reader can identify with the story, he or she is more likely to be inspired to take action.

Storytellers first

Those in the planned giving and nonprofit space should see themselves as storytellers first. Although the educational information is extremely valuable, it is the emotional response that will drive the prospective donor to give.

Empower the donor

It is significant to mention that most donors appreciate stories because they want to share how they have made an impact. This provides you with an excellent opportunity to empower the donor and show them exactly how their contribution has made a difference. If the donor feels supported by you this will encourage them to continue to support your mission.

Crescendo is available to help you with your planned giving marketing. Please contact us at any time for assistance.

Collin Caruso

By Collin Caruso
Integrated Marketing - Northeast Region, Crescendo Interactive, Inc.

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