Practice thinking like your prospect.
Who are they? What do they care about? What are their hopes, fears, dreams? What are their deepest desires?
With the answers to these questions, you can show prospects how planned gifts fulfill dreams. You will also be showing empathy.
Find out who inspires your prospects. That will soon tell you what is most important to them.
As marketing guru Dan Kennedy advises, “Think of yourself as the protector of the hordes of confused seekers. You are the one who will take your prospects by the hand and guide them through hype and confusion and lies, and take them to the promised land of clarity and truth.
“The practice of market empathy is one of the hardest marketing tasks you will ever have to accomplish. Before you can pretend to be someone else and think like a prospect, you first have to pretend you aren’t you. You, after all, are a very small but very loud market sample to yourself. The more you listen to yourself, the less room you have in your brain for thinking about others.”
When you think the prospect is the same as you, the “market to yourself” syndrome follows: you speak in industry jargon (you promote features, not benefits), you assume everyone knows the purpose, history and significance of your nonprofit, and you believe everyone can see the dramatic differences between your nonprofit and the competition.
And since it’s obvious you’re talking to yourself, your prospects politely ignore you.