Co-owners of STORY22 presenting

STORY22 advises charities on how to clarify their message

In this day and age, it can be very difficult for a charity to get its message across.

Capturing people’s attention and raising awareness, not to mention donations, is a real challenge when there’s so much else going on in the world.

A quick elevator pitch in front of a room of potential donors or corporate partners is a fantastic opportunity – but only if you know how to make the most of it. A lack of clarity on your message and your audience starts drifting. Once that happens, there’s no way to get them back.

Never say ‘It’s complicated’ if you want to switch people on

Luckily, here at STORY22, we know a thing or two about clarifying your message. And, at the invitation of Medway Voluntary Action and the Medway VCS Transformation Academy & Alliance STORY22 co-founder Julie Firth and copywriter Rich Firth led a storytelling workshop for a host of local charities.

Both Julie and Rich have previously worked for charities, and both had good examples of corporate partnerships they had been involved with, so were able to share the benefit of their experience with the audience.

To start the day, the attendees learnt about the power of storytelling with a guide through the StoryBrand framework, with real-life examples used to demonstrate its use. Julie, a certified StoryBrand Guide, drew on her past experiences to explain how the worst possible thing you can say when asked what a charity does is: “It’s complicated”. 

Work out your message – then spread the word

Many people who work for charities are so enthusiastic and passionate about what they do, they don’t necessarily think about how they can explain it to people. For attendees, this was swiftly put right by Julie in the next part of the workshop as everyone present was asked to apply the StoryBrand framework to their own organisation.

There was a real buzz in the room as those in attendance – with some guidance from Julie – started to perfect their message.

After this, Rich gave a talk on how charities can maximise their chances of gaining media attention with their stories. Having previously worked on both sides of this process, for The Sun newspaper and Macmillan Cancer Support, he delivered his top 10 tips for grabbing attention with press releases to the audience.

Rich and Julie then went on to present their top tips for landing corporate partnerships, such an important part fundraising component and awareness tool.

The session was finished with a Q&A where the expert wordsmiths answered any outstanding queries before the attendees went home with a clear mission: to put this session into practice for their charities and change the way they deliver their message!

Your new journey starts here!

Attendee Eithne Rynne, Chief Executive at Kent Association for the Blind said: “It can be difficult to simplify your message, sometimes you want to tell people so much about the charity because you feel so passionate about it.

“I am going to go straight back to my organisation and talk to my staff to get us started on this new journey.”

This article was written by Aidan Leith, who is currently undertaking an internship with STORY22 as part of the University of Kent’s Employability Scheme.

Struggling with messaging can be a real challenge for charities, non-profits and businesses.  At STORY22 we’ve helped scores of organisations who have found themselves stuck trying to land on the right words. Our compelling story marketing approach is proven to connect with people using a tried and tested framework that has helped thousands of businesses and charities.

Schedule a free 30-minute strategy call if you’d like to know more.