Program

Storytelling Funding

Good projects need good stories

We bring together Hamburg’s creative storytelling scene with sustainable projects. Whether it’s a TikTok video, newsletter, website, or LinkedIn campaign, you’ll work as a team to create a digital content strategy that focuses on the impact of the projects and gives them the attention they deserve. In doing so, AI tools will help you to make your work more efficient and achieve an even better result.

Join us as we tell stories that inspire and have a lasting impact.

Update

At the Storynight on November 16, the projects and storytellers will present their results together. Register here to be part of the Storynight.

When?
July – November 2023

Where?
Hamburg

For storytellers

You want to help an exciting creative project with a focus on solutions for sustainability and social business gain more digital attention with the right story? We are looking for storytellers, designers, social media experts and digital strategists who would like to support projects from areas which will be relevant in the future with their expertise.

This is what you can expect if you are in the Storyteller Pool:

  • Since AI is currently a big hype, it seems important to us that you as storytellers know what AI means for your work. The storytelling grant therefore offers you a space to experiment with AI tools.
  • At the matching you get to know the projects and you decide who will work with whom
  • Between the Matching Event and the Storynight you will work with the project on a content strategy for an approximate period of 7 working days, providing advice and support with challenges
  • The projects invest at least the funding volume of at least 6,000 euros 
  • At the Storynight you will present the results together
  • A subsequent contract with the projects is intended

 

Storytelling Förderung

For projects and companies

Your product idea can be as good, but its story has to be told cleverly in order to generate reach. Planning and distributing a consistent content strategy is fundamental to this. Need a social media strategy, want to shoot a corporate video or expand your target audience on TikTok? Selected storytellers from our storyteller pool provide you with targeted support for your challenges.

This is what you can expect if you participate in the program with your project:

  • You can receive our funding if your project or company deals with solutions on the topics of sustainability and social business
  • Your project or company has to be based in Hamburg
  • With our Storytelling Funding, you and your project can book concrete implementation strategies, consultations and content solutions with the storytellers from our Storyteller Pool with the funding of at least 6,000 euros.

The application for projects and companies will start on July 3, 2023.

2023

Matches

These projects and storytellers were selected and matched for storytelling funding.

LITTLE ASHÉ x Djenna Wehenpohl & Eva Dietrich

LITTLE ASHÉ is the first Afro-German toy manufacturer in Germany with a focus on diversity. The LITTLE ASHÉ brand wants to communicate its brand values and vision authentically and creatively on social media in order to further expand the community and tap into a new group of buyers.

Djenna Wehenpohl and Eva Dietrich have been working together as a strategy-creation duo for several years. Together with LITTLE ASHÉ, they develop a social media strategy along the user journey as part of the Storytelling Funding, which forms the basis for a construction kit that LITTLE ASHÉ can then use for social media.

greenspot GmbH x BLYNK

greenspot facilitates access to regenerative agriculture as the first green franchise for farmers and covers all steps of the food value chain – from field to plate.

BLYNK has 10 years of hands-on experience in video design and implementation.

Together they are working on communicating greenspot’s complex business model in a simple and appealing way to attract investors for the upcoming crowdfunding pre-seed phase and to convince them of greenspot’s venture.

fobizz x Bettina Knoth

fobizz supports teachers in their daily work with the help of online training, digital tools and AI tools.

Bettina Knoth has many years of experience in brand positioning, communication strategy and campaign development.

At Storytelling Funding, she is working on the repositioning of the fobizz brand as a provider of AI applications and digital tools, including accompanying professional development trainings: From “continuing education platform for teachers:inside” to “daily companion in school life”.

fabel x Nasanin Montazeri, Marlene Borchardt & Anna Scholz

The digital care platform fabel offers caregivers the opportunity to build a care team, plan and share tasks, and find suitable products and services in daily life, medicine and care.

fabel is working with Nasanin Montazeri, Marlene Borchardt and Anna Scholz as part of the storytelling grant. Together, they are working out how to appeal to different target groups in such a way that the fabel app is recommended to others. The topic of family care and caregiving should be communicated in an accessible, authentic and emotional way.

The three storytellers can help fabel with their intercultural understanding of target groups, their understanding of brands, their knowledge of modern content strategy, and their creativity, among other things.

climb x Nasanin Montazeri

During the climb learning vacations, children at risk of poverty can discover their strengths and learn self-confidence, perseverance and teamwork.

With storyteller Nasanin Montazeri, climb will further sharpen the story around their relationship work. Together, they will sharpen the strategy for analog and digital channels as part of the storytelling grant and work with their volunteer coordinator to develop an actionable outreach strategy for spring 2024.

Little World x Bettina Knoth & Anika Kirchner

Little World operates and develops a digital mentoring platform. This connects volunteer German speakers with people with a refugee or migration background who are learning German.

Together with storytellers Bettina Knoth and Anika Kirchner, Little World will improve the design of the website and use campaigns to make visible the human stories behind Little World, experiences of flight, motivations of immigration, gratitude and the encounter of volunteers.

2023

The Projects

Little World is a social start-up that operates and develops a digital mentoring platform. This connects volunteer German speakers with people with a refugee or immigrant background who are learning German. The goal is for conversation pairs to converse in German and for each immigrant person to feel welcome.
Website

Little World gUG

During the climb learning vacations, children at risk of poverty can discover their strengths. For two weeks, they learn not only math and German in a playful way in the rooms of their elementary school, but above all self-confidence, perseverance and teamwork.
Website

climb

The digital care platform fabel brings together and networks existing resources from healthcare and everyday life. fabel offers caregivers the opportunity to build a care team, plan and share tasks, and find suitable products and services in daily life, medicine and care.
Website

fabel

fobizz supports teachers in their daily work with the help of online training, digital tools and AI tools. This enables teachers to prepare their lessons more easily and make them more varied. AI can relieve teachers and take administrative tasks off their hands.
Website

fobizz

As the first green franchise for farmers, greenspot facilitates access to regenerative agriculture and encompasses all steps of the food value chain - from field to fork.
Website

greenspot GmbH

LITTLE ASHÉ is the first Afro-German toy manufacturer in Germany (Hamburg) with a focus on diversity. The dolls are suitable for all children and are made under fair production conditions from organic fabrics in Ghana.
Website

LITTLE ASHÉ

The jury

The jury selects storytellers for the Storyteller Pool and 5-6 social businesses and projects with sustainable impact from among the applications.

Isabelle Gardt

CEO, OMR

LinkedIn

Ramin Ataei

Managing Partner & Co-Founder, Justaddsugar

LinkedIn

Miriam Rupp

CEO, Mashup Communications

LinkedIn

Burak Gökkaya

Co-Founder, vollefarben.de

LinkedIn

Dr. Nina Klaß

Head of nextMedia.Hamburg

LinkedIn

The Storyteller Pool

More storytellers from our Storyteller Pool will be announced here soon.

Urs Spindler

Urs Spindler

Bente Faust und Daniel Hautmann

Bente Faust & Daniel Hautmann

Marlene Borchardt

Marlene Borchardt

Valerie Scholz

Valerie Scholz

WILDYARD

Wildyard

Eva Dietrich und Djenna Wehenpohl

Eva Dietrich & Djenna Wehenpohl

Bianca Wiehmeier

Bianca Wiehmeier

Jessica Louis

Jessica Louis

Bettina Knoth

Bettina Knoth

Flora Rosenow

Flora Rosenow

Andreas Bruns

Andreas Bruns

Claudia Rinke

Claudia Rinke

Urs Spindler

Die Brueder

Urs Spindler is co-founder of the content and design company Die Brueder. He is an editor by profession, but his main job is planning and producing digital experiences for positive impact projects. He is used to coordinating teams and working hands-on on editorial concepts and digital communication.

Bente Faust & Daniel Hautmann

Honig & Gold

Bente Faust, freelance musician and producer, runs the Off Ya Tree Studio in Billbrook. Daniel Hautmann works as a freelance journalist and author for well-known publications. Together, the two run the audio label Honig & Gold – and produce opulent storytelling formats.

Marlene Borchardt

As a journalist, Marlene Borchardt knows how to tell stories. With her focus on audience development, she knows where to tell them. Website, LinkedIn, Instagram? Together with the projects, she develops a content strategy and finds out where the story of the projects gets the attention it deserves.

Valerie Scholz

Valerie Scholz is a journalist and founder of the social startup ‘Facts for Friends’. In addition to her journalistic skills, she specializes in creative corporate and campaign communication for digital target groups as well as format and content production in the areas of text, audio and video. 

Wildyard

It will take more than studies and statistics to make a difference in the climate crisis. It takes new ideas in politics, business and society. And it needs strong stories that inspire enthusiasm for these ideas. WILDYARD tells these stories – in texts, photos or films, in print or online, on a small or large scale.

Eva Dietrich & Djenna Wehenpohl

Eva Dietrich and Djenna Wehenpohl are an expert duo for strategy and creation with a focus on digital solutions. Together, they develop where, when and how an idea can best be communicated and jointly translate this strategic framework into creative content storytelling. In short, they help projects to ensure that their brand presence actually pays off in terms of their goals.

Bianca Wiehmeier

Bianca Wiehmeier is a writer & director for live-action & animation, comedy, music videos, commercials, long & short movies. Furthermore she is an award winning artist & designer for 2D & 3D characters, mascots & puppets and an art director with a passion for photography. As a storyteller, she can invent funny stories & transform them into a movie,
with (or without) mascots, but always with a cool look & design.

Jessica Louis

Jessica Louis, consultant, communication strategist, social designer and impulse generator, accompanies and advises social movements, organizations and brands in the fields of strategy, purpose, innovation, social change x responsibility, communication and design, as well as zeitgeist and trend research.

Together with Kübra Gümüsay, Nürsen Kaya and Onejiru Arfmann, Jessica is co-founder of eeden Hamburg – feminist co-creation space x network. Working closely with the leadership of the Reeperbahn Festival, she has developed the brand & vision work of the gender balance initiative “Keychange” and for Greenpeace the visual identity of the international campaign “Make Smthng”. The common thread running through her various projects is the question of how we can create a more just and happy world for all people. In vision and brand workshops, she guides organizations through a process that gets to the bottom of this question and works out the respective purpose, brand core, communicative strategy / brand narrative.

Bettina Knoth

Bettina Knoth is founder of the brand, design and transformation hub Labstract, board spokesperson of the German Designer Club and author. Her work spans brand development, strategy and design, cross-innovation, format development, storytelling and text. She also writes literary texts, is a guest on panels and talks, moderator of some DDCASTs and editor of “266 world-improving projects – a process”. She has won many awards with her work.

Bettina develops positioning, brand stories, image, product and social media campaigns, formats and content for all media and channels in the field of corporate communications. She gives storytelling workshops and advises companies, organizations and start-ups on how to position their business idea, products and services and what best to communicate to their target groups. She anchors content strategies in the brand and takes into account purpose, benefits and customer insights for a fitting and inspiring storytelling, for which she can also implement the design or visual language.

Flora Rosenow

Flora Rosenow has a holistic approach to creating clarity, structure and creative concepts that projects can use as tools for day-to-day marketing communications and storytelling. She is happy to assist with all branding processes, specifying target groups and added value, as well as marketing and content strategies and planning campaigns. She also provides insights on the topics of impact and internationalization.

Andreas Bruns

Andreas Bruns is director, creative director & founder of RAKETE GOLD. He is an expert in emotional and visual storytelling and can help projects develop and implement creative and efficient advertising campaigns.

Claudia Rinke

Claudia Rinke is a multi-award-winning writer, journalist and screenwriter. Her feature documentary NOW portrays the young climate movement. Claudia enjoys using her storytelling expertise to support sustainable and innovative businesses. She developed the COLLECTIVE JOURNEY storytelling structure that enables companies and customers to embark on a shared journey to a better future. Her startup VELD was recognized as a particularly innovative and sustainable company in the Green Deal Challenge 2022.

Timetable

July 3 - August 21, 2023

Application phase: Storyteller Pool

During the application phase, content strategists and storytellers as well as social businesses and projects with sustainable impact can apply for the storytelling funding.

July 3 - August 21, 2023

September 6, 2023

Jury decision

The jury of expert entrepreneurs and content strategists will select the participating projects and the storytellers.

September 6, 2023

September 19, 2023

Matching Event

The projects and the storytellers get to know each other and exchange ideas about the challenges and strategic approaches. The afternoon event is completed with a joint dinner.

September 19, 2023

September 20 - November 11, 2023

Content Creation Phase

In this phase, the storytellers will get creative together with the projects: Storytellers assist with branding, content strategy, specific implementation and content creation.

September 20 - November 11, 2023

November 16, 2023

Storynight

Short pitches from the projects and storytellers will show the results and solutions that the projects have developed together with the storytellers. The evening offers the chance to network with other exciting Hamburg content actors.

November 16, 2023

FAQ - storytellers

  • You are active full-time in storytelling, including the following areas: Communications strategy, brand positioning, corporate design, visual storytelling, social media, campaign conception, content development (text, audio, video), content production (text, audio, video), app & web design (UX).
  • From solo self-employed to agency teams, all can apply
  • Your place of residence and work is in Hamburg
  • You are willing to work in the program at a daily rate of 800 € net (8 h plus break)
  • You will have time to be present at Match Day on September 19 and Storynight on November 16, and capacity for about 7-8 more days of work during the co-creation phase from September 20 to November 15.

The application phase for 2023 has ended.

  • Technical expertise and professional experience
  • Matching of competencies with the needs of the selected projects
  • Interest or experience in working with AI tools
  • Diversity in the Storyteller Pool

After the application deadline, the jury will review all application documents. We expect to inform you by September 8 whether you are part of this year’s Storyteller Pool.

On Match Day you are invited to get to know the selected projects and other storytellers, because sympathy is the basis for a successful collaboration. During the matching process, projects and storytellers come together to form teams based on their needs and expertise. It may be that there is no fit for you with one of the projects or that you even work with several projects or together with other storytellers on one project.

We conclude a contract with you and the project in which the rights and obligations for all parties are regulated. In addition, we recommend clarifying the concrete nature of cooperation in your team at the Match Day, so that there are no misunderstandings later.

All storytellers receive a standard daily rate of 800 € net for 8 hours plus breaks. For participation in the Match Day you will receive half the daily rate. If a project match is successful, you will receive a flat rate for organizational coordination and preparation of the storynight. For the actual work, a budget of at least 6000 € net is available per project, resulting in 7.5 working days with the fixed daily rate, which are distributed among different storytellers depending on the match. At the end of the program, you will send us an invoice with the number of working days you have worked, which will be confirmed once by the project. In addition, we require a usage statement in which you briefly describe your achievements for the funding.

It is possible to reapply, but you would have to fill out the form again with your current data. The selection process is based on the above criteria, but as a public funding body we have to ensure that the same people do not benefit from the funding over and over again, i.e. we may give preference to other applicants with similar qualifications.

FAQ - projects

  • Visible impact of your project (#social business, #purpose, #sustainable, #diverse, #inclusive, #nonprofit, #circulareconomy, #society, #attitude).
  • Your home/work location is in Hamburg.
  • Whether start-up, association or medium-sized company – all organizational forms can apply
  • Your company or organization already exists or will be established in the foreseeable future.
  • Your storytelling challenge is concrete and must be completed within the funding period of approximately two months.
  • You have time to be present at the Match Day on September 19 and the Storynight on November 16 and there is at least one person in your team who has enough capacity to work with the storytellers during the co-creation phase from September 20 to November 15.
  • Willingness to continue (financial) cooperation with the Storytellers after the end of the funding period

The application phase for 2023 has ended.

Five projects will be funded in this round. The jury will select projects according to the following criteria:

  • Impact relevance
  • Prospect of success for your project
  • Diversity of the funded projects
  • Fit of your challenge to the competences of the storytellers

After the application deadline, the jury will review all application documents. We expect to inform you by September 8 whether your project has been selected for this year’s round.

You will get to know the storytellers from this year’s pool as well as the other projects and present your project and the associated storytelling challenge. On this basis, the matching between projects and storytellers will take place. You can work with just one storyteller or with several. Ideally, not only do the storytellers’ expertise and your challenge match, but you also have a good rapport with each other.

We sign a contract with your project (in this case a fixed contact person) and the storytellers with whom you agreed to work together at the Match Day, in which the rights and obligations for all parties are regulated. In addition, we recommend that you clarify the concrete nature of the collaboration in your team at the Match Day, so that there are no misunderstandings later on.

A net funding amount of €6,000 is planned per project; this may be increased again before the program begins. During the funding period from September 20 to November 15, you can use this money to work with the storytellers in the pool with whom you agreed to collaborate at Match Day. All storytellers work  for a fixed daily rate of 800 € net (8 hours plus breaks) during the program. If you cooperate with only one storyteller, he/she will receive the full amount of the grant; if you work with two or more storytellers, the amount will be distributed according to the number of days worked by each storyteller. It is important that you do not exceed the total number of working days (7.5 working days) that are financed with the funding amount. We will pay the money directly to the storytellers after invoicing.

If you have already received a storytelling funding for this project, you will not be eligible for another grant. If you have participated in other funding programs from our house, a renewed funding is possible. However, as a public funding body, we must ensure that the same projects do not benefit from the funding over and over again, i.e. we may give preference to others.

Contact

Cigdem is the contact person for corporates at nextMedia.Hamburg. As program manager, she is responsible for the Innovator Circle, Storytelling Funding, Content Foresight and the Advisory Board. The trained media businesswoman studied Publishing at the HTWK Leipzig and Book Studies at the University of Mainz.After working for DIE ZEIT, Bookwire and Holtzbrinck ePublishing, she was most recently Manager Strategy & Innovation at the Börsenverein des Deutschen Buchhandels e. V. (German Publishers & Booksellers Association).

Cigdem Boom-Aker

Program Manager
T +49 40 / 23 72 435 60
Cigdem.Aker@nextmedia-hamburg.de
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