The state of storytelling in the nonprofit sector

By Vanessa Chase, founder, Storytelling Non-Profit and Network for Good

Stories have been a huge trend in the nonprofit sector in the past five years, but our sector has been telling stories for much longer. Year after year, we are committed to telling people about our work, progress, and needs. Each time we communicate these things, we are communicating pieces of the larger narrative about our organization.

But things are changing, and storytelling is becoming a much more intentional act. Across the for-profit and nonprofit sectors, storytelling is a buzzword and communicators are consumed with telling stories that will engage their target audience. In the nonprofit sector, donors make up that audience. Our challenge is getting our current donors to give more and acquiring new donors who care about the cause. This is not a new or small task for our sector.

“The State of Storytelling” is a project that came to life out of an interest to know how the nonprofit sector is actually using stories and what results organizations are getting. Stories are constantly talked about as a tactic, but are they really helping nonprofits get better fundraising results?

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