If you have been struggling with launching a legacy program, fear not my friend, you are not alone! It can appear to be daunting but trust me, it doesn’t have to be.
I’m certain you are probably saying to yourself: “oh sure, she’s at a big NGO, it must be easier there!”. Well the answer is … meh, not always. Admittedly, one has more support, resources, and sometimes buy-in but the challenges are different (perhaps a topic for a subsequent blog? what do you think?).
But did you know that before joining Greenpeace International I was a small shop fundraiser for a bulk of my fundraising career? I had to quickly figure out ways to get everything done on a shoestring budget and with little to no support.
The point is that whether you are in a small, medium or large organization, the fundamentals to launching a legacy program remain the same. You may just have to adapt your approach and your expectations in order to stay the course.
The first thing to remember is very important: you don’t need to have a law degree or be a financial planner. There … you’re off the hook!
Why? Because legacy fundraising is about letting your donor talk about her life story, values, dreams, and the legacy she wants to leave behind through her gift to your organization. Your job is to engage her in that conversation.
So, back to the tips to starting your legacy program. In this super brief video recorded last November for AFP International, you will learn my top 4 tips to getting started. Of course there are more but these are the ones I believe are extremely important to consider when starting out.
Short on time? No worries, here they are:
- Get buy-in from senior management and the board (find allies).
- Develop a legacy proposition (why should your donors leave a legacy to your organization).
- Start small: drip legacy messages in all your marketing materials.
- Look for the gems in your database: women, higher education, over the age of 65, long-time supporters such as monthly donors.
Over the next few weeks I’ll go deeper on every point mentioned above to stay tuned.
Got questions? Write to me and on Thursdays I will write a special post answering your questions.
Good luck and let me know how it goes!