The Value of Telling Your Story
Who is your website for? Who do you want to reach? How important do you think it is for your charity to tell its story?
Over the last few weeks I have looked at over 200 different charity, community project and faith organisation websites. There were some amazing ones. However I was shocked and saddened by the large number that failed to ‘hook’ me with their story. Failed to really tell me what they did, who they helped and the difference that their support made in the lives of their beneficiaries.
Often the first sentence was something along the lines of ‘Established in 1989 by …’ or ‘Our site is aimed to give you a flavour of who we are. We hope that as you flick through the different pages you will get a glimpse into …’
Many shared information about weekly or regular groups that they hold and the description of those was often as basic as:
Lunch club for retired people every 4th Wednesday. 12 noon - 2pm.
Pre-school for children with learning disabilities - alternate weeks.
There was very little, or in some cases nothing, on the home page that told me the difference that their help and support made in people’s lives.
As an organisation that provides help and support, for some of the most vulnerable people in the country, you are part of a vital ‘Hidden Emergency Service’. There are people out there who need your help and others who want to help you.
Your website is the ‘window’ that people ‘look in’ to see what you have on offer. It’s how they can decide if you can help them or how they can help you.
With over 200,000 charities, community projects and faith groups spread across the UK it can be hard to stand out. Many of our organisations are run by small teams of unpaid workers and we rely on these busy, dedicated volunteers to keep the show on the road and that includes our websites and social media profiles.
I wish that I had a magic formula to share with you - sadly I don’t. However I believe that here at CharityConnect there is a vast knowledge bank of experience that could be ‘tapped into’ on how to not only tell a powerful story but how to create simple and effective websites that engage potential volunteers and give hope to the people that you are there to support.
So I am asking you to share with us things that may help others. Perhaps it is:
- A link to your website
- A powerful story that you use to engage people
- A simple sentence that explains what you do & who you help
- A method that you use to help you to be succinct in what you share
- Something that you have found that works for you
This list is just some suggestions of what you might share - please feel free to be creative and share something that works for you.
Lastly - what is the most effective charity website that you have seen recently and why? Or what is the best charity social media post that you have seen?
Looking forward to your feedback