How the new rules of marketing apply to planned giving. (A SmartGiftmaker® blog post)

If your organization desperately needs to generate more planned gifts, bequests, charitable gift annuities, etc… it’s time for you to embrace the new rules of marketing.  Things have changed.  The old-school methods don’t work anymore.

We’ve helped our clients completely dismantle their devotion to printed newsletters intended to “cultivate” relationships with past donors because they are too expensive.  Even if you trim your list with wealth qualifiers, the strategy just doesn’t make sense.  Printing and postage are expensive.  Instead, we recommend a funnel and a multi-step process for acquisition and cultivation. 

Planned Giving Marketing Funnel

Basic marketing funnel for finding, generating leads, cultivating leads and increasing the size of planned gifts.

Take a look at your past donors.  Possibly trim your list (although we have found $100,000 gifts coming from some of the least likely donors).  Offer them something valuable to get them into your funnel.  Then nurture them with highly relevant, targeted email, direct mail, phone calls and visits.

Here are the new rules:

  1. Recognize that people like to search for information
  2. And the internet is the most convenient and powerful search tool
  3. People want to be informed and educated… not sold
  4. You must acknowledge the above statements and embrace them
  5. Then build strategies that harness the power of the internet

Ok.  But how exactly do you implement a new strategy with new tactics?
Ahh.  The strategy requires some additional thought and lots of tactical coordination to create copy, design, interactive (web) technology, emails, printing and more.  But the first step is to embrace the new rules.  Then learn more at
We can do it for you.  (Of course we can’t give away all our tricks online.)  We’ve got case studies we can share.  Let us know if you have questions.  The results are fantastic.

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