Viken Mikaelian

Would You Hire an Architect To Clean Your Teeth?

Viken Mikaelian  

When you want your car fixed, you’ve got your mechanic. When it’s time for teeth cleaning, you’ve got your dentist. But you don’t expect them to be interchangeable.

Okay, that’s an obvious one. Let’s talk about two parallel—but still different—professions: accounting and law. CPAs and attorneys work in tandem in many ways, and you probably use their services simultaneously. But still—they’re different. You wouldn’t ask your attorney to generate a profit and loss statement, and you wouldn’t ask your accountant for legal advice. Right?

We all get this. So why is there still so much confusion in the planned giving community about the difference between planned giving and planned giving marketing?

To structure a legally sound trust between a donor and a nonprofit, who do you call? An attorney—preferably one with planned giving expertise.

To communicate a compelling message to donors and prospects about the benefits of a planned gift, who do you call?

Well, if you’re like most people in the planned giving world, unfortunately you call an attorney. Because most planned giving marketing firms are attorney-led. (And that explains the abundance of technically correct, but completely uninspiring planned giving websites, newsletters and pamphlets.)

But those of you who “get it” (especially our clients) call a true marketing firm (like PlannedGiving.com), where your message gets the creativity of a professional marketing team with the security of language approved by attorneys—not written by them.

Your donors want to be inspired. They want to make a difference. They want to be remembered. They do not want to suffer through tedious details and legalese.

Give your donors what they want: inspiration, not a headache.

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