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  • 4 reasons to focus on major gifts (including major legacy gifts)

    By Greg Warner on July 31, 2015
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    1. 3% of U.S. Households are responsible for 67% (2/3) of all household charity (according to the 2011 Bank of America Study of High Net Worth Philanthropy).   2. People earning $10 million or more each year gave the most noncash donations totaling 1/3 of all noncash donations (according to the 2011 IRS Statistics Income Bulletin).   3. Major...

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  • 5 potentially big problems related to telemarketing for planned gifts

    By Greg Warner on July 27, 2015
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    Here are the potential downsides to telemarketing for planned gifts: 1 – The cost could be high; 2 – The calls are usually interruptive inconvenient and always seem to encroach on family time; 3 – They tend to dive into the “mortality issue” prematurely when done wrong; 4 – They could lead to way too many hangups and requests to be...

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  • The best 2-step plan for legacy gift marketing

    By Greg Warner on July 24, 2015
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    1. Generate leads using social norms family reminders and nondeathrelated packages Social norms = “Many of our supporters have done this too!” Family reminders = “You can honor or memorialize a loved one by making a gift in your will.” Nondeathrelated packages = Valuebased offers that do not scare your supporters by talking about death and taxes 2. Cultivate those...

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  • Chasm between knowledge and ignorance in marketing and advertising

    By Greg Warner on July 22, 2015
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    If you are spending your donors’ hardearned cash on marketing (fundraising) you must watch this short video from one of my heroes – David Ogilvy   Lessons learned include: 1. Personalize your marketing to your supporters 2. Don’t be afraid to write lengthy letters or emails (long copy works better than short copy… if it’s good) 3. Get trained...

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  • Why you should use nostalgia to promote more giving

    By Greg Warner on July 20, 2015
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    I recently stumbled upon a neat paper titled Nostalgia: The Gift That Keeps Giving. Here’s a summary:   Overview 1. Nostalgia is a very personal social emotion that involves momentous life events and social bonds. 2. Charitable giving is a very personal social behavior. 3. Nonprofits regard donation encouragement as their single most important challenge.   Question: Does nostalgia promote charitable giving...

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  • Your supporters want a polyamorous relationship with you and your organization

    By Greg Warner on July 17, 2015
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    Polyamorous relationships are nonexclusive. Therefore your supporters will cheat on you. They will cozy up to other organizations (your competitors). They will come and go when they want to. Sometimes they’ll get more engaged and involved. Other times they’ll withdraw or detach. At some point they might even make a plan to leave your organization in their will. And later they might...

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  • The 3 types of planned giving prospects

    By Greg Warner on July 15, 2015
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    1. Disclosers – For these folks (breaking into two basic categories) you need to remember that unless their gift is irrevocable they are still prospects. “YES LET’S MEET” They notified you about their gift intentions AND want more engagement such as a facetoface meeting or a tour of your facility etc. “NO I DON’T WANT TO MEET” Sure these folks have notified you about their...

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  • People won’t give til’ it hurts!

    By Greg Warner on July 6, 2015
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    Sometimes I feel like I should make a list of all the silly things I hear fundraisers say. Here’s one I heard recently that just felt so wrong: “To reach our goal our donors need to give ’til it hurts.” I’ve heard this before. “Give ’til it hurts.” Such a strange phrase. I can’t imagine why anyone would say...

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  • What your donors hear Vs. What you tell them

    By Greg Warner on July 3, 2015
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    I love this cartoon by Gary Larson (Far Side).  If you think you’re getting your message through to your supporters… think again! You’re missing big opportunities if you say to yourself (or to your marketing vendor) “We’re not going to do that campaign again. We already did that.” The truth is… you MUST “drip” your messages over and over and over...

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  • Should your planned giving website include a calculator page?

    By Greg Warner on June 29, 2015
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    Sometimes our new clients get all jazzed about having a calculator on their planned giving website. I guess they feel it’s important to provide a calculator so their donors can calculate their charitable gift annuities or their retained life estates. But I’m not so sure donors really use these things very much. And after reviewing two of our client’s planned giving...

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