Working with our first nonprofit client was a new, sobering experience. Our approach had to change due to the unique requirements of nonprofit projects.
Over the years we have worked on quite a few video projects for the nonprofit. We are glad we had the opportunity.
We are sharing our experience of what works, what doesn’t, and what types of video content to deploy to attract attention, boost credibility, and encourage participation from supporters.
Let’s get started.
1. Organization (Who We Are) Video
Before you expect anything from the audience, whether it’s their support in any way or commitment to a cause, you need to first introduce ‘who you are’ and ‘what you stand for.’
The organization video is a lot like the ‘About Us’ page of a website. The nonprofit must describe its philosophy, its vision, and its mission.
Through the organization video, nonprofits put forward their case for support. Plus, since it’s the first time which is also the best time to make an impression, make sure the tone of the video is compelling and authoritative.
Creating a high-quality, professional video would help. But you don’t have to spend a lot on its making. Nowadays, with basic video assets like a free video editor, Premiere Pro presets, free stock clips, and a smartphone, nonprofit organizations can create a compelling ‘who we are’ video.
Keep the video short, ideally, less than 3 minutes, to hold the viewer’s attention until the end. At the end of the video, include a compelling call-to-action (CTA) to encourage the audience to learn more about the organization.
2. Explainer (What We Do) Video
After arousing the interest of your audience with the introduction video, you need to satisfy their curiosity for more information with an explainer video. This is for the audience interested in knowing the specifics of your nonprofit’s work.
Educate the audience about what you do and to some extent how you do your work. Empathy, service mentality, and passion are critical characteristics of all nonprofits. Hence, let these three qualities shine through your explainer videos.
Through the explainer videos, showcase the changes on the ground that is the direct and indirect results of the organization’s efforts.
Nonprofits can create more than one video. Hence, keep the videos short and concise, the maximum length not exceeding more than 3 minutes.
To keep the audience interested in these videos, consider using a mix of live-action and animation formats. Include the explainer ‘what we do’ videos on the website, social media, or send them directly to the audience’s inbox.
3. Campaign (How You Can Help) Video
Campaign videos are the lifeblood of a nonprofit. Most nonprofits are in constant need of funds, volunteers, or use videos to further their mission. Campaign videos can be used to highlight the projects that require funds or volunteers.
Most videos in this category don’t directly ask for donations. They instill a sense of social responsibility in the viewers and urge them to do their part in the success of the project.
These videos need to be short (around 2-3 minutes) and end with a compelling call to action. The CTA can take any form. With the help of a QR code generator, you can add a donate QR code to the video. This will cut down the steps from the video to donation.
Nonprofits can use campaign videos to attract small donors. They would need a more personal and direct approach for large donors.
To make the content compelling, the campaign videos must contain the following ingredients:
- A clear, specific goal; in no uncertain terms state what you expect from the viewers.
- The request must satisfy a specific need. Don’t forget to state how the viewer’s contribution will help the project.
- Create a sense of urgency by specifying a time limit within which the viewers need to take action.
4. Behind-the-Scenes (Meet the Team) Video
This type of nonprofit video takes a personal look at the team – the people behind the scenes involved with the actual functioning of the organization.
Nonprofits work to make the world a better place for people now and the future generation. Serving humanity and nature is serious work, but it could also be a fun, enjoyable, and life-changing experience for everyone involved.
The feeling of joy, camaraderie, and satisfaction emanating from behind-the-scene videos can be infectious to the viewers.
The behind-the-scenes videos are not only about fun, such content also showcases the contribution, commitment, and dedication of the people in the organization.
There could be more than one behind-the-scenes video and the lengths could also vary. If the video is a long one, ensure it is optimized to improve the load time of the video and webpage where the content is published.
5. Testimonial (What Is My Impact) Video
Before a person commits to a nonprofit as a donor, volunteer, or in any other capacity, he/she must believe they belong to the setup.
The testimonial videos go a long way in highlighting the culture of the organization. These videos give a glimpse of people and the real action on the ground.
The ‘what’s my impact’ videos have a greater effect on the audience than any other type of nonprofit video. These videos reveal what the people who have volunteered believe and how they behave.
Watching these videos, the viewers might realize they are no different from the volunteers and donors who are making a difference. This realization might encourage the viewers to associate with the nonprofit in some capacity.
Authenticity is a key ingredient in testimonial videos. There is practically no creative input as the videos show people as they are, their role, work, thought process, and behavior.
Since the ‘what’s my impact’ videos play a big role in attracting like-minded people to a cause they become an indispensable part of an effective nonprofit content strategy.
6. Celebration (Thanking the Supporter) Video
The donors, volunteers, and supporters of a cause are the fuel that power nonprofits. They deserve to know what their involvement with the organization has achieved. These videos are a celebration of the supporters.
The content can show what common people can achieve when they decide to take action. Plus, ‘thank you’ and ‘celebration’ videos also help nonprofits stay in regular touch with well-wishers.
These videos help strengthen the supporter’s commitment because they see the impact of the nonprofit’s work on the ground. These videos can also serve as a base for gathering support for future missions and projects.
Nonprofits can market celebration and thank you videos on the website and social media. That said to develop a long-term relationship with supporters send these videos to their inbox using email newsletter software.
7. Origin (How We Started) Story Video
The origin story that showcases the necessity that gave birth to the nonprofit organization is as compelling as the story of a startup. Marketers won’t find more inspiring and engaging content than an origin story video.
The origin story video will not just inspire, it’ll endear the audience to your organization. It’ll make them want to be part of an inspiring story and the organization that makes a difference in society.
Your origin story could be a great attraction on social media. That said marketers can also include them on the nonprofit’s ‘About Us’ page.
Marketing a nonprofit organization is a challenge. Nonprofits heavily rely on messaging and storytelling to achieve their goals. The 7 types of video content in our list are best suited to create awareness, raise funds, encourage memberships, and drive social change.
Cristian Stanciu is a freelance video editor, owner and post-production coordinator of Veedyou Media – a company offering video editing services to videographers, marketing agencies, video production studios or brands all over the globe. I can catch up with him on his blog or on LinkedIn