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Ice Cream Sundaes and Why Good Data Matters

The last time GuideStar attempted to make a video, YouTube was still an infant. That video included scenes of a soap opera production set sans camera and, quite amazingly, a young lady sticking her head into an ice cream sundae. (Don’t believe me? See the screenshot below.)

Ice Cream Sundaes and Why Good Data Matters

In the end, my predecessors were not thrilled with the finished product and decided to shelve it. But, let me say that I was ecstatic to recently come across an archived copy.

I was particularly happy to stumble upon it because my colleagues and I had just started thinking about putting together a new video in celebration of GuideStar’s 20th anniversary.

For a certain type of nonprofit, video can be a highly effective medium to use in eliciting an emotional response. Think of the power in showing devastating images of rescued abused animals or beautiful images of preserved American landscapes.

But GuideStar’s visual story is a bit trickier to tell—particularly in 90 seconds. Our team worked for months to shrink, shift, and stretch a script that told GuideStar’s full story in short enough time that jived with today’s limited attention spans.

In the end, we realized our story is really about letting you, the nonprofits of America, share your story with the world via your GuideStar Nonprofit Profiles. So we hope you will take 90 seconds to check out our new video. Enjoy!


Has your organization struggled with creating an effective video? What are the challenges and rewards of establishing your own video brand identity? Tell us what you think of our new video in the comments below!

*Shout out to Hieronymus for their help with the new video. We know the challenge of telling GuideStar’s story wasn’t easy, especially when we requested no ice cream sundaes be featured.

Ice Cream Sundaes and Why GOod Data Matters Gabe Cohen

Gabe Cohen is the Director of Communications for GuideStar, the world’s largest source of information about nonprofits. In this capacity, Gabe implements and oversees strategic marketing and communications plans to advance GuideStar’s brand identity; broadens awareness of its programs and priorities; and increases the visibility of its programs and thought leadership across key stakeholder audiences. Gabe leads GuideStar’s media relations efforts and has secured earned media placements for GuideStar in a range of national outlets such as the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Forbes, MSNBC, Yahoo!, Buzzfeed, and the Boston Globe. In addition he recently co-authored a feature article in Nonprofit Quarterly regarding the opportunities GuideStar provides to nonprofits that want to increase their visibility and share their full stories. Gabe is the marketing lead for major GuideStar initiatives including the Overhead Myth, the Simplify Initiative, and encouraging nonprofits to update their GuideStar Nonprofit Profiles.

Topics: Impact