I want to ask you to take a moment and think about why you decided to pursue a career in public health and dedicated yourself to serving, helping, and empowering people. We all have a story to tell, and reflecting back, our stories are what have got us to where we are in our professional as well as personal lives.
First decide what is the goal of your story? What are you trying to achieve? Do you want to raise awareness? Are you trying to get more people involved in your cause? Are you simply trying to raise money for a cause or event? Whatever the goal, make sure to focus on that.
Instead of writing your story, make a simple video to use audio, pictures, and animations. All these makes it that much more effective!
Here is an example of video from SDWR non-profit organization that trains service dogs and one of its beneficiaries story:
Make it short! No need for making a documentary! Even better, make it shorter than 3 minutes while getting your point across as recommended by Anthony Veneziale. People nowadays have an attention span of a goldfish!
Here is a 43 seconds video released by a Swiss nonprofit organization to reveal the far-reaching effects of domestic abuse:
Now that you have seen a few examples and experienced the power of storytelling, it’s time for us in public health to adapt to this method to better connect with our audience. As though it is simpler for some versus others, there are ways to make an exquisite video.
Here is how:
Ask if anyone in your organization knows and/or would like to join you. You might be surprised that some folks are already way ahead of you when it comes to social media and storytelling!
Thanks to accessibility of smartphone and tablets, you probably already have the equipment to make a video and you don’t know it. The editing software might be the one that is the most costly. If you are like me an “apple” person, you will find iMovie extremely useful.
Once you have the video, post it on your website, Facebook page, blog about it, tweet it, make it go viral within your community. Keep in mind that despite the efforts you might put in to make the video, it probably won’t be viewed by all and make it to Hollywood…. but that is O.K.
The last but the most important part of making a video and sharing your stories is to not get hung up on the process and the mistakes you will make a long the way. At the end of the day, shooting a video should be more fun than a burden.
Give it a try!