The Power of the Story-Telling Testimonial in Your Nonprofit

Most nonprofits know the importance of having an active Google My Business, Facebook, and other similar platforms — and that reviews on these platforms are paramount. But, there’s another tool that uses the power of personal recommendations known as a story-telling testimonial. Keep reading to learn what all of the buzz is about. 

What is your Story-telling Testimonial?

A story-telling testimonial is a story a client, a volunteer, or a donor shares about their experience with your nonprofit organization – that goes above and beyond a normal 1-sentence testimonial. These experiences are so positive that they resonate with your community and compel them to want to provide continuous support in succeeding in your mission. 

You want your story-telling testimonial to come from super fans of your nonprofit and should cover six phases:

  1. Who they are and their interaction with your organization — this establishes credibility.
  2. What was their biggest skepticism about interacting with your nonprofit — this makes them relatable to other potential community members or people seeking your services but are on edge. 
  3. How their perception has changed by working with you, learning more, and being involved with your NPO.
  4. What their biggest success or takeaway was after 
  5. What impact will this have on their lives and the community
  6. Adding one more antetode or token of advice — this reaffirms any skepticism and adds authenticity.

You can use full or parts of their story-telling testimonial in grant proposals, impact stories, studies, social media, and more. 

The impact of story-telling testimonial is unmatched. Here are a few quick stats:

  • 92% of people read online reviews before becoming involved with something [1].
  • 70% of people trust reviews and recommendations from strangers [2].
  • 72% of people will take action only after reading a positive review [3].

Download our FREE Guide to Gathering Story-Telling Testimonials

Create authority and social proof for your nonprofit website, social media, and online impact stories by knowing the EXACT questions to ask for a perfect story-telling testimonial.

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Benefits of a Story-Telling Testimonies

Establishes Trust

Story-telling testimonials come from regular Joe’s, not paid actors or celebrity endorsers. These unbiased reviews are more likely to be trusted by the general public than if The Rock endorses a product or service in a highly-produced and financed TV spot. Story-telling testimonials are also more trustworthy than if someone from your staff talks up your services, which is seen as part of their duties to educate the public. 

Increases Credibility

The more testimonials you have, the more attractive your nonprofit appears to potential supporters and clients because you look extremely credible. People will be much more likely to support and interact with you because they see that the local community has had great experiences. You must be a reputable and legit nonprofit with which they don’t mind spending their time, talent, and treasure. Also, the more credible you look, the higher your chances are of being awarded grants and gifts from large donors. 

Connect Deeper with Your Target Audience

Studies show that emotional attachment is a critical driver in donors’ long-term associations with nonprofits. When you use story-telling testimonials with real people speaking from their hearts, they are much more likely to strike an emotional chord with the reader or viewer, allowing a deeper bond to grow with your NPO right off the bat.

Improves Engagement

A high-quality story-telling testimonial can persuade even the most uncertain supporters and clients by showing that your nonprofit and community are there to serve. Posting your testimonials on social media and asking others to weigh in is an excellent way to boost your engagement while also harvesting additional testimonials.  

How to Utilize Story-telling Testimonials

If you want to harness the power of your testimonials to start reaping the sweet benefits they bring, consider the following:

Add Testimonials to Your Home Page

Internet users don’t have the time or patience to click around your website to find your testimonials. They’ll likely move on if they can’t find it within a few seconds. Put compelling testimonials on your homepage. If they like what they read, they will likely stay on your site and browse around.

Share Testimonials on Social Media

You can share entire testimonials or choose to share clips or short quotes for snackable testimonials that will catch and keep users’ attention on Instagram, TikTok, Facebook, etc. 

When someone leaves positive feedback on social media, engage with it by liking it, commenting back, resharing it, etc., immediately to boost engagement and visibility.

Use Them in Impact Stories

Impact stories go into even more detail about how your nonprofit solved a particular problem with its services. These stories are essentially long-form testimonials that take outsiders through the entire journey and the pain points that got solved along the way.

What’s more, impact stories are an excellent way to give supporters a deeper look and, in turn, provide more reassurance that your organization is necessary within your community.

We Can Help

Are you ready to start creating more buzz around your nonprofit with story-telling testimonials? Download the five questions you should ask when getting a testimonial and start your testimonial program today.