If you had ever received a “Thank You” note from me, you’d remember that the inside says, “Gratitude is the Best Attitude” because I am and always try to be very grateful. After all, it’s good for you! In fact, according to Dr. Lissa Rankin, gratitude boosts happiness and… happier people live up to 10 years longer than unhappy people. So, as I get ready to stuff myself with turkey this weekend, I thought I’d share with you the things for which I am grateful. Here we go:
1- Happy clients
When our clients are happy, we are happy. When we hear things like “we continue to be extremely pleased,” “what you’re doing is groundbreaking,” and “the results have been amazing,” we know that we’re making a difference, and truly helping fundraisers just like you put a dent in the universe.
I am especially thankful that time and time again Dr. Russell James has teamed up with MarketSmart to spread the word about his research findings. Our most recent webinar “Words that Work: The Phrases That Encourage Planned Giving” was simply astounding. Here are just a few quotes from some of attendees:
“Thanks to Dr. James for his research and his delivery style which is easy to understand and put into practice. We appreciate the opportunity to view this webinar at no charge”
“Dr. James is great. I am a former direct marketer, now major gift professional. This content is fantastic and much needed for non-profit fundraising! I am a believer.”
“Thank you for the work you do. It is very important particularly at this moment in history when the largest wealth transfer is going to happen. Thanks for sounding the alarm that it is not IF charities are going to get estate gifts, it is when, and how are they going to deal with them with dignity and good stewardship.”
Our stuff is working! One recent campaign (in just 36 hours) uncovered 76 previously undisclosed legacy gifts (all unknown prior to the campaign) and 820+ prospects who would consider a legacy gift.
Another, similar campaign uncovered 97 previously undisclosed legacy gifts, and generated over 2,000 legacy giving leads.
Finally, a third campaign we aimed at just 3,675 planned giving prospects, revealed that 2,765 of them have either already left a gift, requested information or were willing to consider such a gift option.
If these results aren’t a reason for gratitude, I don’t know what is!
4- Our tribe
We have been very fortunate to have made some terrific friends since we started this journey. Although our ideas have been called “innovative” by many, there are tons of folks who have given me a really hard time about what I’m doing. So I am especially grateful for those people who saw early on that the disruptive nature of our technologies and strategies was worth a try. Thank you for helping us “spread the gospel” and for referring terrific clients to us.
Phyllis Freedman – Phyllis knows her stuff. Everytime I talk to her I find myself learning something new. From planned gift marketing, to strategy, to her unparalleled attention to detail, Phyllis Freedman is surely one of the best in the field.
Greg Lassonde – You may have heard Greg’s webinar with us on the 10 Paradigms You Need to Shatter To Power Up Legacy Giving. Greg has been working as a legacy giving specialist since 1992 and started his own consulting business in 2007. His fundraising experience since 1982 has covered the full spectrum, from direct mail to legacy giving, and most everything in between. Greg also acts as a coach and that’s where his passion really helps you get results.
Michael Rosen – Michael literally wrote the book on planned gift marketing. His blog posts are so thorough and educational. He is, simply put, one of the most inspiring people I’ve had the honor to meet. And, his defense of the donor is righteous, right-minded, virtuous, and noble— to say the least.
Lawrence Henze – I have never met anyone with a greater understanding of predictive modeling and how it can help fundraisers generate untold sums of money from planned gifts. I honestly cannot remember how we first met but the relationship has always been filled with deep, collaborative discussions about helping nonprofits generate more revenue, smarter— a goal we both share.
5- Family and friends
Of course, none of MarketSmart’s successes would be possible without the support and encouragement of all of our families and friends. They put up with our late nights, early mornings, and weekend Google Hangouts. THANK YOU and, happy Thanksgiving!!
What are you thankful for this Thanksgiving? Please share in the comments!
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