One Man’s Stories Are Changing the World

natestpierreThe Internet can help you achieve almost any goal, whether it’s sharing a video, meeting new people or driving sales to your business.

Nate St. Pierre has a different goal in mind: to bring love and compassion to those who need it most. In his free time, the Milwaukee man has created several charitable projects that have provided donations and kind words to people in difficult situations.

Determined to do what he could to make the world a better place, he assembled an online army of volunteers and challenged them to help others. The movement, called It Starts With Us, eventually grew to 10,000 members across 100 different countries.

During a presentation at PR Pro Day on Friday, St. Pierre said the key to attracting attention and inspiring action comes down to being true to the story: Make it simple for people to engage. Relate to your audience on a personal level. Tell a story that will capture their attention.

“If you make it easy to consume and easy to do, these stories will get out,” he said. “The stories will do it themselves.”

After seeing the power of It Starts With Us, St. Pierre launched a spin-off project called Love Bomb, which called on group members to find blog posts of people going through a tough time. These blog posts would then get bombarded with positive comments from people in the “Love Bomb” community, bringing positive energy to those coping with family medical emergencies or  contemplating suicide.

One girl told St. Pierre she was planning to come home and kill herself, but changed her mind after reading the 150 positive comments from those in the Love Bomb community.

After changing the world with words, St. Pierre decided to make a difference with money. He launched another project, called Love Drop, that asked group members to donate their time and money to helping out people in need. They hired videographers to tell these heartbreaking personal stories to inspire action from group members.

One Love Drop story that hit particularly close to home in Milwaukee centered around a family with two non-verbal autistic boys. Because one of the boys would run away if left unattended, the family needed to buy a $13,000 service dog to monitor his whereabouts. Love Drop was able to fulfill that family’s needs, as it did for 11 other families that year with a total of $90,000 in donations.

St. Pierre is also able to help people in his day job at Give Forward, which has raised nearly $100 million for medical expenses. One of his more recent accomplishments was raising $71,000 for 8-year-old Lacey Holsworth, a cancer patient who won over the hearts of college basketball fans when she became friends with Adreian Payne of Michigan State University.

When asked about his secret to building a membership base and inspiring action, St. Pierre said his approach is to do more storytelling and less selling.

“My outlook is to build something that’s so awesome that people can’t help but want to be a part of it,” he said. “If you don’t have to market your product – if it’s so cool that people will do it themselves – that’s the best marketing you could ask for.”


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(Jeff Rumage writes about public relations news for PRSA’s southeastern Wisconsin chapter. You can reach him at jeffrumage(at)