One of the questions that I get asked the most is: “How can I find stories to tell?” As a fundraiser or communications professional, you might be one removed from the stories you most want to tell. Understandably, it can be more challenging to tell those stories.
I’ve written many blog posts about collecting stories and this post is designed to be an easy reference guide to them. I hope you’ll bookmark it and come back to it whenever you need some tips for collecting stories.
Culture of Storytelling
Before you read anything else, read this: How to Create a Culture of Storytelling.I believe that creating a culture of storytelling is how non-profits can be successful at storytelling.
Finding Stories to Tell
Having a process for collecting stories is important. Here’s how you can create a better internal process for your non-profit.
Bring staff members together to collect stories. Sometimes you just need to find a way to get everyone on the same boat and moving in the same directions. These tips are for you.
Coordinating stories for multiple departments or offices can sometimes be tricky. Here are a few ways you can coordinate collecting stories from staff.
You might find these 5 tools for collecting stories helpful. These are all free tools that can help streamline your efforts.
If you want to tell donor stories, here are 4 steps to start tell donor stories.
5 Tips for Finding a Story for Your Year-End Appeal. This will be helpful if you’re thinking ahead to year-end fundraising and want to incorporate a story into your appeal.
Thank you letters are also a great place to share stories. Here’s how to collect a story for a thank you letter.
Want to always have stories on hand? Start a story library.
Once you’ve started building a story library, be sure to keep your stories organized.
Just getting started with story interviews? This post is for you – How to Conduct Better Interviews.
Sometimes we take for granted that it can be difficult to share a story, especially with someone you don’t know very well. Here are some tips to help you support people when telling their story.
Questions to Ask (or not ask) During a Story Interview
25 Questions to Ask to Get the Story – this is a swipe file of questions that you can use word-for-word, or you can use them to inspire your original questions.
What questions should you not ask during a story interview? Here’s one I always avoid.
If you’re looking for more resources to help you collect stories, be sure to download the free chapter of my book below. It’s filled with even more actionable tips and ideas to help you tell stories!