Episodic Content; Can Nonprofits Use It?

4 min read
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We're living in the digital world of episodic content marketing. If you're anything like my family and me, you have at least two of these apps on your smart TV: Hulu, Amazon Prime, Netflix, HBO Max, Disney+, or AppleTV.

People love to watch shows with multiple episodes. It's more than just the convenience of binge-watching an entire season in one weekend. Still, it's also about the emotional connection viewers develop with the characters and storylines. But what about nonprofits? Can your organization leverage the power of episodic content - like a video series or podcast - to create a positive perception and help them achieve their goals?

The answer is a big YES!

How Can Nonprofits Use Episodic Content?

Episodic content can be an effective tool for your nonprofit. You could create a video series or podcast to build advocacy, increase engagement, and drive action around a specific cause. Here's Why:

  1. Storytelling: At its core, episodic content is all about storytelling. It's about taking the viewer on a journey, introducing them to characters, and creating an emotional connection. For your organization, this is a compelling way to bring your values to life in an entertaining and capturing way.
  2. Engagement: When viewers invest time in a video series or podcast, they become emotionally invested in the people and storylines. Time is essential because the more time your audience spends with your brand, the stronger their connection will be. The goal is to build rally and advocacy, not just awareness.
  3. Repurposing: Episodic content can also be repurposed into smaller content that can be shared across social media, email, and other channels. This can help extend the content's life, reach a wider audience, and offset the labor of "creating social content" for social.
  4. Brand Values: We agree with Wistia about exploring a theme highlighting your organizational values instead of your product or services. According to Why America Gives, a donation report, "many donors are passionate about making an impact but find it challenging to identify an organization that matches their values." Leading with your values makes it easier to connect with an audience that believes what you believe and wants what you want. Don't fret about not showing your impact; there's a time and a place for that along your audience journey map.

Tips for Creating Effective Episodic Content?

  1. Develop a plan: Developing a plan is crucial before you start creating. What is the goal of the content? Who is the target audience? What brand value are you trying to highlight? Answering these questions will ensure that your content is effectively an original concept only your organization can create and resonates with your audience.
  2. Create Video Series: Plan to batch everything to save time. Write all the scripts simultaneously and film all your episodes over a day or two (if possible, depending on your show). Interviews shows are great for batching recordings.
  3. Keep it shortish: You want your episodic content long enough to explore a topic or tell a complete story. Aim for episodes that are 10-15 minutes in length. This will help with our next step, repurposing content.
  4. Repurpose Content: With your content in hand, it's time to create a home for your series. Ideally, these will live on your website to allure people back to you using a product like Wistia Channels or Vimeo Showcases. Use social media to share your teasers, trailers, pull quotes, and behind-the-scenes clips. 
  5. Measure success: Finally, measuring the content's success is essential. This can be done by tracking views, engagement, conversion rates, and, most important, time spent with your content. By measuring success, nonprofits can refine their content strategy and improve their episodic content's effectiveness.

If you're curious about using episodic content marketing to create creating bing-worthy videos, check out Wistia's dope playbook.

Bottom Line

Episodic content marketing is a powerful tool for engaging and educating audiences. By leveraging the science behind our love of stories and behavior around binge-watching shows, nonprofits can market like media companies. With the proper planning and execution, episodic content can be a powerful addition to any nonprofit's communications and fundraising efforts.

Ready to create a video series that supports your brand?

BairStories offers video marketing for environmental & social justice nonprofits to help you build lasting connections with your audience. Get in touch with us today!

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