Planned giving: simultaneously the simplest and most mystifying aspect of charitable giving, this one can be a tricky subject to approach. I mean, there’s got to be a tactful way to say, “Thanks for being such a valued donor…don’t forget about us after you’re dead!” And to even leave a planned gift…isn’t that something that’s only for the ultra-rich? The kind of thing reserved for millionaires with tons of funds to give away?
We’re here to bust some of the biggest myths about the planned giving process, and give you the tips that you need to navigate a successful campaign.
Not only can a planned giver have an average income, but people who donate as little as just $15 a month are ideal candidates for leaving a donation. Due to the idea that leaving a gift in your will for a group is something reserved for the super wealthy, chances are that most of your donors might not have even seen planned giving as something they could do too.
Donors who frequently upgrade the amount they donate are also great to target with your planned giving campaigns. Someone who is open to the idea of leaving consistently higher amounts and whose interest in your organization has been growing over time could potentially want to ensure their largest gift possible after they’ve passed.
The most surprising group to target? Lapsed donors. A large final gift could be a way for a donor with gaps between giving to solidify that their thoughts were with your org all along: we’ve even heard of a donor who went radio silent for about ten years, and then left 70,000 dollars for her choice charity! Seriously.
The thing that most donors may not realize about planned giving is just how easy it is to do. Like, really, really easy. If someone knows how to donate any amount of money currently, chances are, they’ll be able to navigate leaving a planned gift. Try to get over any uneasiness you have over the possibly morbid idea of asking people about their wills, and always be sure to mention that your organization can assist with any questions regarding the process.
That way, you’re not abruptly telling people to make a choice RIGHT NOW regarding their will, but instead just gently planting the seed. If you want your donors to make a planned donation, chances are, you’re gonna have to ask for it and let them know that it’s even an option.