Giving Compass' Take:

Creating supportive communities that will listen to your call to action requires thoughtful and intentional messaging. Communication team members from Oceana and the Malala Fund share experiences of  their strategies catalyzing social change in their communities.

What type of messaging strategy is most effective?

Melinda Gates is a proponent of storytelling when trying to affect people's thoughts on impact-giving and action.

As a communications professional, there is a good chance that you are part of an online community — in my case, Devex and several more. Fostering community with your audience has become integral to the communications work of NGOs, foundations, and donor agencies as the engagement standards shift from passive actions by the masses to active and organic interaction by real people you can name and place.

Engagement is no longer just a matter of getting views or driving traffic — it’s about translating that into action.

Development communicators I speak with are eager to build intentional community with their audiences and create genuine spaces that inspire action. To dig deeper into how we can actually do that, I recently sat down with development communicators from Malala Fund and Oceana — both nonprofits with engaged and unique online audiences — to find out how to foster community that is as inspired as it is impactful.

For Taylor Royle, chief communications and creative officer at Malala Fund, catering to a core audience of girls and women ranging from 12-24 years old meant being intentional about the team the fund hired to craft its messaging. The all-women communications team is comprised of young professionals with diverse experiences and backgrounds.

Royle emphasizes that development organizations and nonprofits also need to talk more about diversity — in every sense of the word — on global communications teams. If your communications team doesn’t include people who share experiences with the people you want to reach, you will risk alienating the individuals who live, work or speak the language of those communities.

Building diverse teams, refining strategies, and evolving in real time will be the trademarks of sustaining communities in a changing digital space.

Read the full article about creating communities through intentional messaging by Carine Umuhumuza at Devex International Development