Power of Nonprofit Storytelling | “I’d give anything to get my hands on her again.”

February 20, 2017

Because we are such visual creatures, stories through video can be ultra compelling for us. Video is a medium that, when it comes to nonprofit storytelling, is rarely utilized, even though it has its own unique advantages. Especially for narratives that are careful, nuanced, and purpose-driven.

Obviously, for the video narrative to work, it needs to be executed well. The fact that your organization chose video as your mode of storytelling doesn’t 100% guarantee an epic story, but luckily for you, the ways you can make a story-by-video compelling are numerous, if not infinite.

Interval House, Canada’s very first shelter for abused women and children, recently called on renowned ad agency, Union, to create a PSA for release on Valentine’s Day. And it was epic.

So why is this video compelling? What makes it so? For me, there were lots of reasons.

There was the natural intrigue of the subject of the video: three men each providing their own account of “the one who got away.” It sounds cliched, but the very idea is undeniably relatable for so many of us, isn’t it?

Then there’s the cinematography that really sets the stage, almost immediately alluding to something darker, more sinister.

And I can’t forget *that* twist in there that I didn’t even see coming the first time I watched it.

Or the fact that Union flipped Valentine’s Day on its head in a way that is beyond clever while so connected to Intervale’s mission and history. Or how this tale quickly transformed from romance to horror in almost no time at all.

Understandably, this video and the story within it stayed with me for days after I first viewed it. My attention was captured and held…and held. It doesn’t get much more compelling than that.


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