1288 Valley Forge Rd. Building 82
(800) 490-7090

What We’re Up To These Days

Viken Mikaelian

Some people in our industry have made planned giving so moribund that they can put a cat on speed to sleep. Vendors included.

I realize that planned giving is serious business, and with some organizations maintaining a conservative tone would only be appropriate.  But for the majority of nonprofits, they should just lighten up a little. We’re all in the “marketing” business and too much formality makes you vanilla.

Here are just a few of the things we’ve been up to:

  • We’ve come up with new marketing messaging. And yes, some are “deadly” for those who want them, and a few are “edgy” for the brave new world.
  • Although U.S. Mail still dominates, we are focusing on digital media for future generations.
  • We’ve come up with a new, much more donor-centric planned giving website platform. A discounted upgrade fee is available for clients.
  • We’re in the process of producing The Planned Giving Bible™ — a much more comprehensive version of our famous Pocket Guide.
  • We renamed Planned Giving Tomorrow to Giving Tomorrow™, and made it a monthly. It is now for clients only (non-clients can subscribe at $247 per year). Apply to be featured in the magazine.
  • We’ve expanded our print marketing services. Estate planning for women? We have it.  Gifts of Cattle? We have that, too. (Yes. Really.)
  • There’s now a beautifully designed online Donor Album with videos.
  • We still stand firm on our position that traditional planned giving newsletters have a much lower ROI than planned giving postcards. We have more evidence to support this. We recommend donor newsletters instead.
  • As you may know, we own the domains (URLs) plannedgiving.COM.NET and .ORG. We just acquired giftplanning.ORG and .NET. It takes marketing prowess to be the sole owners of such valuable domains. We’re using them to rank ourselves and our clients higher up in search engine results.

But most importantly, we’re very much focusing on corporate sustainability, strengthening our team, and making research the basis of all our marketing tools.

A burial plot is the last thing you need… so rest in peace that we’re on top of our game.

I love this business, and love the culture we’ve created. I hope you do, too.

Sincerely,
Viken Mikaelian

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