Getting behind a cause

Philanthropists have some many different charities to choose from. A way to get a cause out onto the radar of those wiling to give is to go viral through video.

Video is good way to tell a story and give an audience an emotional connection. No matter how small the cause a good story can lift donations astronomically.  No matter the facts with the right story any cause can be lifted to the forefronts of donator’s minds.

Just like the charity: water campaign the video was able to get to individuals around the world. With a little push from those who are invested in the cause can lead to bigger results. The spread of video does depend on it getting pushed out by as many people as possible, and the video needs to hit all the different social media avenues. Having a good story is only a portion of getting a video to go viral.

But once a video does goes viral it can be seen by millions of people who are looking for something to believe in. A touching inspirational story not only opens people pocket books but also breaks down the walls of skepticism.  People today are very pessimistic about certain charities, United Way and LiveStrong, have gotten some bad PR leaving people questioning who to donate to. A good viral video shows the inner workings of a charity, which can allow it to be more transparent.

People who donate want to see where their money is going.  Videos are visual and allow people to see the story, it’s not like reading a story, a video give a first person perspective.  Ira Glass on Storytelling, said that it’s not about the facts, the most boring facts could be put into a video and tell a good story.

Today’s society spends so much time online, being able to promote a cause where the individuals are is very important.  People’s attention spans are also much lower and a video is a way to tell about the cause in the shortest amount of time. People want to be entertained and a good story in video form entertains people.

If you are looking to get your cause on the forefronts of donators mind, make a video and tell them about it. You never know it might go viral

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2 responses to “Getting behind a cause

  1. Yes, I agree with you Rebecca about the effectiveness of storytelling in video to help gain support for a cause. There is something about the power of video that helps make things feel so real. It was great to see the Ira Glass videos on Story Telling. He has tremendous amount of experience in this area that is admirable. He mentioned that sometimes you can take a scene in a video where there are simply no words being said, just images that are leading up to (or are a sequence of) a bigger event about to happen which can be quite riveting. I think of the video for the ASPCA (American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals) where there is only images of animals that have a destitute look on their faces. The only thing you hear in the background is the Sara McLaughlin singing to “In The Arms of Angels.” I cry just about every time I see that commercial. It’s the same power of imagery that video storytelling uses that makes a topic tug at a person’s heart strings. I think in the Charity: Waters video was successful for this same reason.

  2. Hi Rebecca,

    I think you make some really valid and interesting points about story telling and organizations which require donations. However, I do wonder how long a tactic like this will be effective until we are largely de-sensitized or become unaffected by it. Like Katherine noted above the ASPCA commercial are certainly heart wrenching but I find myself every time I hear it come on, I am reaching for the remote in order to change it. It seems this video and story telling tactic has been overdone by this organization.I feel it is a fine line that a organization must tread in order for the story telling to be effective. Maybe a mix of media and tactics that could include storytelling would be more effective.

    Great post!
    -Kristen

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