Story + Data = Magic

Here’s an exercise for you nonprofit fundraising and marketing folks out there: compare the following messaging.

Here’s part one:

Help make sure the best care is available for Australian dads and their families when they need it most.

As one of the nation’s leading hospitals, The Alfred is the trusted provider of 14 vital state-wide services, and cares for the sickest patients in the region.

For one day only, we will be holding a very special Father’s Day Appeal, Give 4 Dads.

Give 4 Dads is aiming to raise $800,000 to purchase new, state-of-the-art equipment that will benefit all our patients.

Until we reach this target, every donation you make on Friday, 31 August will be multiplied by four thanks to the pledged gifts of our generous supporters.

In particular The Alfred wishes to thank Bulla Family Dairy, our presenting partner, as a major Victorian family owned business their support we help us improve the care we are able to provide to our patients and their families.

And here’s part two:

They’re wildly different, right? Besides the medium – one is text, the other video – there are lots of other distinctions. One is practical and informative. The other is emotional and lively. One gives a birds-eye view of the organization. The other speaks to impact from the inside.

Together, this messaging helped raise over a million dollars for The Alfred hospital.

And every campaign should have both. 

The data hits on the rational side of your supporters’ brains. It’s the evidence. It’s the scope of the challenge or opportunity.

But the story side hits the heart. It allows the audience to see themselves in the cause. It presents the human face of what would otherwise be a single data point.

The strongest campaigns can speak to both.

The Alfred’s Fathers Day campaign did so beautifully, weaving heartwarming individual stories of dads who had been helped by the hospital’s services with data that clearly demonstrated that each of those fathers wasn’t alone.

The need was clear, and great, and urgent.

And you, dear potential donor, could help.

When you hit on both those notes, you get gifts with responses like this:

And those with responses like this:

The story and the data work together to engage those closest to the work, and those a degree away who appreciate it differently.

And you hit your million, and beyond.

And, like the Alfred, you just keep on doing your good work.

How will you weave story and data in your next campaign? Book a conversation with a Charidy fundraising specialist to start strategizing today!



  1. […] You’ve got to tell a story. And the story you tell should demonstrate how the work of your organization brings on a moment of transformation for those you serve.  […]

  2. […] Looking for appreciation inspiration? Here’s a lovely example from The Alfred Hospital’s campaign (we wrote about their storytelling recently as well). […]