“4 times as many consumers would prefer to watch a video about a product than to read about it.”

“If a relevant image is paired with text information, people retained 55% more of the information three days later.”

With findings like these, it’s no surprise digital marketers rely more heavily on visuals than ever before. As the human attention span dwindles, nonprofits need new ways to ensure their marketing efforts stay relevant and have impact. Thankfully, there are plenty of new tactics for capturing the attention of your audience and, of course, most of them are visual. Visual storytelling is an easy and effective way to take your nonprofit branding to a more powerful level. So what tools can aid you in the process of developing a bold visual storytelling platform?


If you have a ton of stunning photos just waiting to be released, Exposure is the perfect place to create eye-catching stories with them. With three plans to choose from, Exposure offers a home for your photos with auto-resizing, unlimited uploads and the ability to embed your visual stories anywhere on the internet. Unlike some platforms that require a great deal of technical skills, all a nonprofit really needs to succeed with Exposure is a good camera and a reason to use it.


This free tool allows you to access free books, picture books and poetry, or create your own digital or physical books. Especially useful for nonprofits that work with children, Storybird can help you instantly capture the attention of little ones with beautiful illustrations. The platform is most commonly used by writers, artists, teachers and parents, and features a fundraising option where kids can create real books of their own for a cause. Regardless of whether you run an educational nonprofit or not, Storybird is an intuitive and creative platform that people of all ages can learn to use.


So if your stories are already well on their way to having a great impact, how can you level up even more? Esri is a geographic information system (GIS) mapping software for analyzing and managing data. Esri can provide a visually compelling geographic element to your story, showing real maps and landscapes, visual breakdowns of data, and footage to bring your story to life. Especially useful for environmental organizations, Esri is a great tool for showing the how and where behind a nonprofit’s work. If you struggle to tell a story with a clear, linear start and finish, Esri can simplify the process.


Would you rather do most of your storytelling from your iPhone? Is your Instagram feed lackluster? Over is an app that helps you transform your imagery without any graphic design knowledge. It’s like a cheaper, simpler Photoshop in your pocket. With Over, you can create polished invitations, Facebook covers, branded images with text, and more. It’s also useful for creating and applying the same filters to all of your images to cultivate a look and feel that matches your brand.

These are just a few of the dozens of visual storytelling aids that can add structure, detail and professionalism to your marketing materials. So if you’re starting from scratch, determine what elements of your nonprofit would have the most visual appeal — Is it a certain program you’re running? The demographic you’re serving? The environment you’re working in? Use these visually appealing elements and tie them back into your nonprofit’s big “why.”