How to Attract Volunteers with the Power of Video

If a picture’s worth a thousand words, then a video’s worth at least 1.8 million. That’s why we’re launching our new and improved Media Manager. For the first time ever, VolunteerMatch Members can embed videos into their profile page and volunteer opportunity listings.

Click here to see Media Manager in action on Crisis Text Line’s volunteer opportunity!

Why video and why now? Well, the stats are clear — video rules the internet. In fact, more than 75% of internet traffic is now streaming video content.

What’s more, marketers can confirm that video has become one of the most effective ways to get your message across. Here’s why:

User behavior backs this up. For example,

What does this mean for you? While VolunteerMatch can get your volunteer opportunities in front of millions of potential volunteers, we can’t make them pay attention. But video can. Here are some tips to help you make sure you stand out and grab the attention of prospective volunteers:

1. Keep It Short

Studies suggest that videos between 1-2 minutes receive the highest engagement. Any shorter, and you might not be able to capture your full message. Any longer, and your audience’s attention will quickly drop off.

2. Grab Attention Quickly

With only two minutes to work with, make sure to capture your audience’s attention quickly. If the first few seconds are boring, they’re not going to watch the rest of your video.

3. Add Subtitles

About 44% of VolunteerMatch visitors access the site on their mobile phones, which means they might be scrolling through in a public space with their sound off! Other viewers might have hearing impairments. Consider adding subtitles to your video to keep your message accessible to all prospects.

4. Be Authentic

People want to know what your organization is about. This is your chance to tell them in your own words. Viewers even prefer an informal or conversational tone. Above all, stay true to your organization and your mission.

5. Show Impact

Based on a recent survey we did with Verified Volunteers, people choose to volunteer because they (1) want to contribute to a cause they care about and (2) want to improve their communities. Tap into their motivation by clearly showing how they can contribute, what this means for the community and why it’s important.

webinar iconFor tips on telling the story of volunteer impact, join us for our free webinar on the topic.

6. It Doesn’t Have to Be Professional

While a high-quality professionally-produced video is great, don’t worry if it’s not in the budget! These days, most of us carry around video cameras in our back pockets. A live Instagram Story-like video recorded on your phone that takes you behind the scenes of your organization and shows what it’s like to volunteer can be just as impactful and engaging. And if you film it with Instagram, you can even add filters, stickers and other fun effects as appropriate.

7. Present a Clear Call to Action (CTA)

Don’t let their interest stop here! Now that you’ve inspired prospective volunteers to take action and educated them about your organization’s work, present them with the next steps to get involved. If you’re adding the video to your VolunteerMatch opportunity, the CTA is clear — click the “I want to help!” button to sign up to volunteer.

Looking for some inspiration? Check out these excellent examples of engaging, educational and impactful nonprofit videos:

Second Judicial Circuit Guardian ad Litem Program

This incredibly moving PSA informs the public about CASA’s guardian ad litem program. With moving audio and visuals and an empowering message, this video is a great example of a volunteer appeal that connects with the viewer on an emotional level and inspires you to give your time to the cause.

Habitat for Humanity

Habitat for Humanity’s “2018 Year in Review” video exemplifies how to share your organization’s impact. This video shares real footage of volunteers building homes, a compelling testimony from a client plus impressive impact numbers from the past year! What volunteer wouldn’t want to get involved?

charity: water

A wonderful example of how to educate viewers about your cause. By using engaging illustrations and a simple, conversational tone, this charity: water video makes their message easy to understand and compels viewers to take action.

Reading Partners

“Inside a Reading Center” takes viewers behind the scenes of a Reading Partners site. You’ll get a sense of what it’s like to serve as a volunteer tutor as well as the incredible impact each tutoring session can have on a child’s life.

UCLA Volunteer Center

Check out how the UCLA Volunteer Center used the Instagram Story feature to highlight on-the-ground footage and illustrate all the ways volunteers can give back to their community. This video proves amateur videos can be just as motivating, engaging and informative as professionally produced ones!

Learn more about how you can add video to your VolunteerMatch profile and opportunities and begin attracting more prospective volunteers with Media Manager today.

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