"You are HEROES in our story."


The Power of Story in Communicating with Donors

by Brian Summerall, Director of Ministry Strategy

Using the elements of story that he learned in our new Donor Communications/Power of Story Workshop, Lubbock Area Director Glenn Austell made the above video to thank the donors at his banquet.

Glenn learned in Dallas that story is the most powerful form of communication that the brain understands.  When we position our donors as heroes in kids stories (which they are!), Young Life becomes the guide to invite our donors into an identity transformation and help them win the day.   As a result, lives are changed for eternity, we help them become a part of a bigger story, leave a legacy, and be good stewards of all that God has given.

Do you struggle to communicate effectively and clearly with donors?  Are your email blasts and newsletters being read or are they quickly trashed or deleted?  Last fall I attended author Donald Miller’s  (Blue Like Jazz) StoryBrand Marketing conference in Nashville (www.storybrand.com).  What I learned revolutionized how I communicated both Young Life and Young Life Access to donors and staff.  Over the last few months I’ve shared what I’ve learned in with staff in Dallas, the Service Center, the Development Department and every US Division.

Consider joining us in Dallas for our next Donor Communications/Power of Story Workshop and I’ll share how Miller’s unique framework for communications can help staff with their emails, newsletters, donor solicitation letters, social media, elevator pitches, and banquet talks. Since our group will be small, you’ll have time to work with other staff on your own area’s story which will serve as a framework for you future communications.  


Glenn Austell's script from his Banquet Thank You Video:


We were changed because you gave.  We were befriended because you invested.  We grew because you planted.  We found hope because you prayed.
When we are given an example of who we can become and when we come to grips with how greatly we are loved, that influence stays with us.  It tucks itself into the deepest parts of who we are.
You saw us clearly for who we were.  Dreamers.  Listeners.  Thinkers.  Comedians. Engagers. We talk.  We fear.  We mess up.  You pick us up and dust us off.  We swing for the fence. 
We hope. 
Young Life is where we are built.  It’s a place where we have found acceptance and deep friendship.  A place where we have been given knowledge of who God is and who He has created us to be.
We have been seen, heard and truly known…because of you.  Because you have been faithful.  You believed in us and our future.  We found Christ because we saw Him reflected in you.
Thank you for investing in Young Life (repeat).  Thank you for investing in us.  Thank you for investing in  eternity. You are heroes in our story.