Nine Words That Will Strengthen Your Nonprofit Messaging

In Content Marketing for Nonprofits, Kivi Leroux Miller mentions a language study by Jen Shang, a psychologist who studies philanthropic behavior uncovered nine agitators Americans use to define a good person:

  1. Kind
  2. Caring
  3. Compassionate
  4. Helpful
  5. Friendly
  6. Fair
  7. Hard-working
  8. Generous
  9. Honest

As you can imagine, the process of going from awareness about an issue to taking action (donating, volunteering, etc.), involves a complex psychological process. And many times this process doesn’t move along as fast as we’d like. 😉

Why emotional words matter

Your community acts when emotions are triggered. Using the words listed above will increase the likelihood that they’ll do something, whether it’s donating, volunteering, or simply sharing your campaign with their friends. And while words might not be as powerful as images and video, they do have a triggering effect, according to neuromarketers.

What next?

Aside from buying Kivi’s book right now, put aside some time this week to update your content strategy, as well as your website copy and email messages.

Obviously you don’t want to force these words into your copy. If it doesn’t feel natural to you, it won’t feel natural to your community. Rather, let the words emerge naturally from within existing stories and messages.

What do you think?