Sharing your organisation’s story. Best practice for content creation. Calls to action. Using multimedia to bring your message to life.
This resource is for:
- Digital, marketing or communication leads who need to plan, edit and publish content for the ‘About’ page of their non-profit organisation’s website.
In it you'll learn:
- Why your About page is important
- Why you should learn about your audience, and how to communicate with them
- How to share your organisation’s story
- Using multimedia to bring your page alive
- Why a good structure can help content to flow
- Using call-to-actions.
Why your About page is important
Your website's About page is probably one of the most visited pages on your site. So it’s important the content is informative, compelling, and impactful.
Your About page will help your audience understand your charity's history, achievements, objectives, and unique qualities. When creating it you should consider how it will:
- share your charity’s story and mission
- encourage positive actions such as donations, volunteering, fundraising and partnerships
- give visitors a succinct answer about why they should get involved.
Also consider sharing the following:
- your charity’s history
- information about your team and people’s expertise
- your mission, vision and value statements
- the impact your charity delivers
- your charity’s plans for the future
- information on how the charity is reaching goals
- visual elements to support your key messages
Learn about your audience and how to communicate with them
Begin with some user research. Carry out an empathy map exercise with a colleague. Doing this will help you build a better understanding of your target audience.
As you map, focus on your audience's "pains" or problems, and "gains" or desired benefits. Identify the challenges they face and the benefits they seek from your charity.
Do empathy maps for any of these audience members you consider important visitors to your About page:
- end beneficiaries
Understanding your target audiences will make it easier to create page content that resonates with their needs and motivations.
Don’t be afraid to inject some personality into your writing too. This can help make an emotional connection with page visitors. You can also tailor your charity’s message by considering its tone and style. This should increase awareness and support.
How to share your story
First, explain the history of your organisation and why it started. Next, share your charity’s mission statement, including:
- the core purpose of your organisation
- the problems it aims to address
- who it supports exactly and why
- how it achieves its goals or vision
- and your core values which guide your charity forward
Introduce team members, including their qualifications and experience. This builds trust and credibility with visitors.
Showcase impactful milestones, achievements and awards. This creates a more authentic and believable message.
Use data and real-life stories to show the positive impact of your charity. This brings your story to life and makes it more memorable too.
“Stories are remembered up to 22 times more than facts alone” - Jennifer Aaker, American behavioural scientist, Stanford Graduate School of Business.
Your charity should also share its ambitious plans for the future. This could be as a timeline with key milestones. It could also be a paragraph of text from your founder or CEO. Inspire your website visitors to learn more about your goals so they want to get involved.
Examples of charities with impactful About pages:
- Railway Children
- Future First
- Charity: Water
- LDN Apprenticeships
- Sand Dams Worldwide
- Cancer Research UK
- Blue Cross
- Action for Children
Use multimedia to bring your page alive
Multimedia helps to create an emotional connection between your charity and the audience. It makes complex information easier to understand and is more engaging than text alone.
Visuals make the page more memorable. Studies have shown that people remember 80% of what they see, but only 20% of what they read.
When selecting visuals, focus on the communities you help. Use visuals that show the activities you do and the impact they have.
Infographics, illustrations and icons are also helpful. They share your charity’s offer and can add a unique brand personality. Action Tutoring and MyBnk do this well, whilst Shelter shows an authentic use of photography too. Another example which illustrates how their work improves the lives of those in need is WaterAid.
It does not need to be overly complex though. A simple audio recording, from your team members or an end beneficiary, can highlight the impact of your charity’s work too.
A good structure helps content to flow
When naming your ‘About’ page, there are a variety of options. Discuss the title with your web developer or an SEO specialist.
Some options include:
- ‘About us’
- ‘Our story’
- ‘Who we are’
- ‘Our purpose’
Your About page should be easy to navigate. Include clear headings and subheadings.
You may add sub-pages for sections like Reports, Policies and Careers. Sub-pages help visitors find the information they need.
People scan web content, rather than reading it word-for-word. Another study has shown that users often leave web pages within 10-20 seconds. Their average attention span is likely to be low, sometimes below 10 seconds. So avoid lengthy paragraphs. Instead divide your content into small, digestible blocks. Use bullet points and lists to break up the text.
The Reading Agency is an example of a charity with a well-organised About page. They effectively highlight their mission and impact. Sand Dams Worldwide also share a wide range of information on their About pages.
Call-to-actions (CTA) are important when converting visitors into supporters. Use CTAs to invite visitors to:
- get involved with your charity's campaign
- request a share via social media.
Use clear language with links or buttons that direct your visitors to relevant web pages.
You can also signpost your visitors to other pages, for example:
- Impact pages