Reconnecting with Content: 3 Steps Toward Better Storytelling

Hands at a keyboard alongside a pad and pencil and phone on a desk
Behind the Scenes

If you’re in charge of writing content for your organization you know the task can be daunting. Good content is hard to write because it’s a mix of marketing, narrative, and strategic calls-to-action. Finding a good balance is crucial to your content’s success.

In the end, the one thing that makes content worthwhile is its ability to tell a story. And a good story comes from the heart.

The demand for content can often lead writers astray and running on autopilot. Automated writing (in contrast to efficient writing) can lead to hackneyed content and will fail to convince potential donors, volunteers, and partners of your organization’s cause. Rather than risk a poor first impression, stop and take time to reflect about your organization’s history, the people who work there, and the people you reach. We need moments of reflection to think about the ways in which we tell our stories but also to reconnect with our organization’s mission.

3 Steps to Reconnect

Spend more time talking to co-workers about things other than work

Your co-workers represent a powerful collective of individuals who have made the conscious decision to dedicate their lives to the greater good. They all took different paths to get to where they are today. In the process, they have picked up valuable skills and insights that all actively contribute to your organization. Take time to share resources and stories. Vocalizing personal journeys is not only inspiring but will help you to reflect on your own path and provide additional perspective that will enrich your own thinking.

Go to an outreach event

Make an effort to attend your organization’s outreach events regularly. Too much time at the office can disconnect you from the tangible change your organization is creating. Connecting the faces behind your day-to-day work can be particularly empowering. Not only will this help you maintain perspective but those meaningful experience will also translate to your writing.

Make free writing a habit

Freewriting is a writing technique designed to help you ward off writer’s block. The technique involved writing continuously for 15-20 minutes without stopping. Start your day with a short session to help you improve the fluidity of your writing.

Keeping yourself in tune on a daily basis will translate to your writing. Being preoccupied with how you will write something is miles ahead of why. Everything you write, no matter how big or small, gives voice to your organization. The words you choose and the way you say them communicate things about your organization (both explicitly and implicitly). Having control of the subtleties and nuances of content is what makes a writer effective.

You’re doing great work, make sure to tell it well.