Social entrepreneurship is steadily emerging as a sweet spot between business and social impact. In the article Changing face of Social Entrepreneurship, we offer a quick overview of the development of social entrepreneurship in India.Today’s social entrepreneurs are young and creative, most often with stellar credentials, and armed with management acumen to run their enterprise as a professional entity. Private investment ecosystem has also significantly improved over the last decade, particularly in last five years in India.
Impact investors, startup accelerators and incubators (let’s call them Social Good Incubators, collectively) are bringing in cash, management expertise and accountability, thus turning innovations of social entrepreneurs into consumable products and services. While visual storytelling as an excellent tool for branding is mostly talked about in context of social good brands, it can be equally effective for social incubators.
They Understand The Problems
Social good incubators specialize in understanding the problems & challenges associated with social innovation. By playing the role of teachers, facilitators and financiers, they provide the right platform and the work ethos to social entrepreneurs. Incubators act as major catalysts by fostering disruptive ideas, honing them and shaping them into sustainable solutions.Their emergence has spawned a new-age, impact-centric economic landscape, better known as Capitalism 3.0. It focuses on applying business ingenuity to fundamental problems of humanity like lack of basic healthcare, education, housing, increasing economic inequality and climate change.
From a trickle of $1.17 million in 2000 to investments of about $250 million per annum since 2011, there has been a major uptick in investments, taking the total to $1.6 billion spread over 220 for-profit impact enterprises. – SSIR, 2014
Storytelling For Social Good Incubators
- Introducing visual storytelling as tool for promotion to investees
A Social Good Incubator through its mentor-ship program guides its investees on various facets of entrepreneurship- sales & marketing,team building,taxation and legal structure and such. Thus it is the best source for introducing Visual Storytelling to its investees as a tool for brand building and promotion.This can happen only if a social good incubator itself understands the application and efficacy of storytelling.
- Promoting services to potential mentees
Ideas that carry a plausible proof of their real world success, sell more. Telling success stories of past investees / alumni as a proof of its commitment can attract budding social entrepreneurs to an incubator’s mentor-ship program.
Visual story by Villgro.org to attract investees for fellowship
- Using a cause story to communicate the vision and purpose
Cause stories explicitly focus on the issues that form the base of an incubator’s initiatives. Telling cause stories to communicate the vision and the type of solutions sought to match that vision can prove to be very effective, not only in building an incubator’s brand but also in making the application process more effective.
- Pitching to potential investors
Not all impact incubators possess their own funds to support every promising idea. Incubators and startup accelerators depend on investors and foundations to build a corpus for investment. Employing a storytelling approach to pitch to their potential investors can prove to be effective in conveying the right picture of their efforts on ground.
- Attracting talent and partners
A winning combination of cause and impact stories based on a compelling narrative can give a major thrust to an incubator’s brand. This can help in catching the attention of potential partners and genuine talent.
Storytelling can unite a social incubator’s vision with that of the investee’s mission to convey social change to a broad variety of people. All it needs is the incubators to understand this and bring it to life.
Cover Image Source: Stock photo used in www.bgr.in