Fundraising News: Legacy Promotion ads 'unlikely' to spur giving

The Legacy Promotion Campaign has "lost its way" by focusing on a generic marketing campaign that is unlikely to increase legacy giving, a charity fundraising veteran has claimed.

Peter Maple, director of development at Corporation of the Sons of the Clergy, was one of the original advocates for a legacy campaign on behalf of charities.

"They got 100 charities to sign up, which was great. Where I think it came off the rails is when they decided to go for a major generic advertising campaign. Generic advertising has a bad track record. It is very hard to put over a 'giving is good' message with any real conviction."

Maples has nearly 15 years of voluntary sector experience, including work as director of public affairs at Leonard Cheshire, director of fundraising at Arthritis Care and campaign director at the YMCA.

He criticised the Legacy Promotion Campaign's 'Remember a Charity' advertising campaign. "Those ads with the slogan 'Don't let their good work die' are not going to make anybody write any giving into their will. You have got to inject a bit of passion into it for causes that people feel strongly about. The further you move away from causes the harder it is to get people to give."

He said the campaign should focus more on its lobbying of independent financial advisers and solicitors. But Theresa Dauncey, director of the Legacy Promotion Campaign, said the PR and lobbying work was always meant to be complementary to the main aim of raising public awareness through adverts and direct mail.

She added: "What's more, it's working. There has been an increase of 5 per cent - from 22 to 27 per cent - of people saying they are fairly or very likely to include a charity in their will. We have lots of support from solicitors and financial advisers. I agree they are a very important part of the campaign, but they have to work in tandem with the marketing drive."

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