Our team is continually looking at the ever-changing landscape for Planned Giving Marketing. The other day in a planning session about our suite of Planned Giving Marketing offerings, the head of our team posed a somewhat bizarre question to me.
He asked, “Do you like canned green beans—do you eat them sometimes?”
At first I thought he was crazy and I was thinking, “What do green beans have to do with Planned Giving Marketing?!” But I went ahead and played along telling him yes, I do like canned green beans well enough.
He then asked, “What if you had your best guests coming over for dinner—would you serve them canned green beans?”
I thought about it and then responded that no, I probably wouldn’t….canned green beans are fine, but I wouldn’t serve them to my best guests. Instead, I’d serve them something that they liked and was made especially for them.
Then it clicked as to how this relates to Planned Giving Marketing…for a nonprofit organization, Planned Giving donors are like your best guests because they are making the ultimate gift to your organization. So when coming up with how to target them and what to say to them, you wouldn’t want to use “canned” programs to identify them or “canned” marketing material to talk to them.
Every nonprofit has unique donors with different reasons for giving and being devoted to your organization. A “canned” Planned Giving analytics program would work okay for identifying Planned Giving prospects, but why would you want to do this when looking for your best donors? Wouldn’t you want to use the most custom analytics instead?
And it’s the same for how you communicate with your Planned Giving prospects and donors. “Canned” communications to them would work fine, but these are your best donors you’re talking to—instead, you’d want to make your Planned Giving Marketing materials customized to your organization and customized to them as much as possible.
So it took me a little while to catch on to the analogy, but I really kind of like it…canned green beans are fine, but you wouldn’t serve them to your best guests; just like “canned” Planned Giving Marketing programs are fine, but you wouldn’t want to use them for your best donors either!