Our stories have the power to move supporters along on a journey: introducing them to a problem, dispelling myths, offering hope, introducing them to our organization, showing them how we solve the problem, building trust, and inviting them to take action.
At any point in time, you’ll have people at different stages along these five levels of awareness (from copywriter Eugene Schwartz):
- Unaware – They don’t even know there is a problem.
- Problem Aware – They know about the problem, but not about solutions.
- Solution Aware – They know about solutions, but not so much about your organization, the work you do, or what makes you special.
- Brand Aware – They know about you! But they aren’t convinced you are the right fit for them.
- Most Aware – They get it! They know about the problem, what you do to solve the problem, they know, like, and trust you, and they’re ready to join you (just waiting for you to ask).
It’s important to think about the donor’s journey, and where they are in it, when crafting our stories. We must also consider our organization’s goals (increase monthly donations, bust a myth around the problem we solve, attract volunteers, etc.) and position ourselves and the story accordingly.
Address potential donors according to the stage of awareness they’re in. Do this, and donors will be more informed, engaged, and ready to respond when it’s time to ask for their support.