To List or Not to List

Annual reports are one of the few places we recognize legacy society members.  The question of whether to include deceased legacy society members often comes up. Brian Sagrestano makes an excellent point is his book, The Philanthropic Planning Companion, co-authored with Robert Wahlers.  “We discovered that several of our older generational cohorts, particularly the World […]

To List or Not to List

by pfreedman on April 1, 2014 · 6 comments

Annual reports are one of the few places we recognize legacy society members.  The question of whether to include deceased legacy society members often comes up. Brian Sagrestano makes an excellent point is his book, The Philanthropic Planning Companion, co-authored with Robert Wahlers.  “We discovered that several of our older generational cohorts, particularly the World War II generation, are looking for immortality. It is very important to give them that by keeping all deceased members of your legacy society on the list of members. It encourages living members to keep your organization in their plans because they will be remembered and immortalized after they have passed on. If you remove deceased members from the list, immortality is lost. In a few decades we likely won’t find legacy societies particularly helpful anymore, based upon the values of the New Philanthropist generations setting up gifts now, but we don’t want to alienate our Traditionalist generations for the immediate future—so keep the deceased members on the list.”

Thanks, Brian, for that research-based insight.

Phyllis

{ Comments on this entry are closed }

The Curse of Frequency

by pfreedman on March 25, 2014 · 2 comments

I’m often asked whether, given limited resources, planned giving marketers should send marketing pieces to as many supporters as possible but fewer times a year or whether we should mail to fewer people more often. The brilliant marketer Seth Godin recently blogged on the topic.  Godin says that it’s proven that frequency works, saying “If you promote something twice to one hundred people it will lead to more sales than if you promote it once to two hundred people. Frequency galvanizes attention and improves trust.”  Frequency seems to make sense in gift planning, too.  We know from Russell James’ research that life events affect estate and charitable planning and life events can happen at any time so “drip marketing” is the right approach.

On the other hand, your best friends, the early adopters, can become annoyed by frequency because they took action when you first asked.  Godin says, “The curse, of course, is that the best members of your audience, the ones who are listening the most carefully, have to be bored/annoyed at the messages that show up after they take action. Some people pledge the first day of pledge week, or buy the book the day it comes out. Those folks don’t want or need to hear the message again.”

He also notes that repetitive messages have become so ubiquitous that we’ve trained people to know that they can ignore the first, second or even third message because they know from experience the message will come round again.

Unfortunately, Godin doesn’t have a silver bullet that can help us know when is enough is enough and for whom.  But there are things we can do.

When someone does respond, by notifying us of a gift or by raising a hand as interested in the possibility of a gift, our message should change to reflect the communication they’ve had with us. We must be dynamically responsive and customize the message by audience. One-size-fits-all messaging isn’t good enough.

And we can use digital channels to cost-effectively get the message repeatedly to the widest possible audience.  Who knows, perhaps receiving the same message but in two different channels, doesn’t seem like the same message . . .

Phyllis

 

 

 

{ Comments on this entry are closed }

Divorce & Marriage

March 18, 2014

Did you know that the divorce rate among those 50+ has doubled in the last 20 years?  What’s that got to do with planned giving?  Roger Craver and Tom Belford, who pen the leading fundraising blog, The Agitator, recently posted on this topic. They remind us of the critical need to keep our donor data […]

Read the full article →

The Good, the Bad & the Ugly

March 13, 2014

That’s how my friends at Mal Warwick | Donordigital described the results of their secret shopper analysis after donating online to 16 different nonprofit organizations. Their report, which you can download here, has important insights for planned giving: Make sure you migrate donors between channels.  If someone interacts with you first online, make sure you also […]

Read the full article →

Show Me the Money

March 11, 2014

Willie Sutton famously said he robbed banks because “that’s where the money is.”  Here’s one place where the money is that we don’t highlight nearly enough:  The opportunity to name our organization as the successor/beneficiary of a donor advised fund. Monies residing in a DAF must eventually go to a charitable beneficiary.  It cannot go […]

Read the full article →

Girl Scout Cookies

March 5, 2014

Today there was a great post by the remarkable Seth Godin that’s a perfect follow up to my post yesterday about asking.  It will take you five minutes to read. Phyllis Share this: Bookmark on Delicious Digg this post Recommend on Facebook Share on Linkedin Tweet about it Tell a friend

Read the full article →

3 Reasons to Ask

March 4, 2014

Asking can be daunting.  If you approach the prospect of asking with fear of rejection, embarrassment or a bruised-ego then these three reasons for asking—each based on a scientific study—are for you. Reason #1: People are more likely to say ‘yes’ than you think. Numerous studies looking at many different requests; from soliciting charitable donations […]

Read the full article →

What’s Wrong With This Picture?

February 26, 2014

I love subscribing to the PPP list-serv because people ask the best questions and other subscribers freely give of their expertise to provide answers.  One recent query prompted me to write. The gift planner who posted the question asked advice on this: years ago her organization had been notified of a gift through a trust […]

Read the full article →

My Top 7 Takeaways from Dr. James’ New Research

February 19, 2014

Dr. Russell James continues to be an incredible source of actionable insight into our planned giving donors.  The research he presented at the PPP conference last fall is the most recent case in point.  American Charitable Bequest Demographics is his analysis of 20 years of survey research on the charitable estate intentions of 26,000 individuals. […]

Read the full article →

Web Design Best Practices for Boomers

January 29, 2014

This image is a good reminder of the difference in the user experience when someone goes from reading content on a computer monitor, to a tablet to a mobile device.  Yet, most of us are still designing our websites, emails and landing pages for monitors, expecting that it will serve equally well across all platforms.  […]

Read the full article →