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You Deserve A Lagniappe: Kevin Gentry’s interview of Richard Viguerie (Part 5 of 7)

Richard Viguerie
Memo to Conservative Leaders

From:  Richard A. Viguerie

You may remember in late February I began to share with you a series of interviews that my friend Kevin Gentry conducted with me.

These memos focused on how to effectively market to conservative organizations or candidates for public office.

I had sent 5 interviews when Kevin paused for a few weeks to focus on educating conservative marketers as to how to adjust their marketing during the COVID-19 crisis.

Last Saturday, Kevin restarted his interviews with me, so in the coming days, I’ll reprint them. These articles may not be of interest to all readers of ConservativeHQ, but if you are involved in a conservative nonprofit, either full-time or part-time, as a Board Member, a volunteer, or you’re considering being involved with a nonprofit, or perhaps you’re a candidate for public office or volunteer for a candidate – then you will benefit from my conversations with Kevin.

In fact, I have a better idea. Why don’t you sign up to receive your own copy of Kevin’s Tips every Saturday morning in your email inbox? The price is right – FREE. Just click here to start getting your own free copy starting this Saturday.

What’s a lagniappe?

It’s a bonus, an extra gift.  

Like the thirteenth donut in a baker’s dozen.

It’s a Louisiana French expression, and it’s thought to be derived from Spanish Creoles or the Incas.

In many cultures around the world, a merchant might throw in “a little extra” at the time of purchase.  A piece of candy, a small toy – a lagniappe.

Well, today, as a very modest diversion from the depressing news around the coronavirus outbreak, you’re getting a lagniappe.

And appropriately, it comes from one of my favorite Louisiana Cajuns, Richard Viguerie, the pioneering architect of political direct mail.

Tips readers might remember our four-part series on Richard’s “Four Horsemen of Marketing” –

Positioning – finding your “hole in the marketplace”

Differentiation – how you publicly contrast yourself with your competition

Benefit – what’s your value proposition to your prospective donor?

Brand – how are you known, defined or categorized?

Well, just when you might have thought we were done with this discussion, I got another message from my friend and mentor, Richard Viguerie.  It was a lagniappe.

The subject was “your tagline.”

And that’s where we are today – your lagniappe – your "extra gift."

Let’s discuss your tagline.

Richard, what do you mean by a tagline?

“Just when you thought it was safe to get back in the water.”

Do you remember that?  It was the tagline for the movie, Jaws – one of Steven Spielberg’s first action-thrillers.

Just when you thought you were ready to return to other subjects, I’m back again!

There’s one more important but often overlooked element of marketing I wanted to share with your audience:  it’s your TAGLINE.

A tagline appears under the name of your business or organization.  In essence, it’s a sub-headline.

Think about this -- the names that most businesses or organizations choose are generic.

They don’t describe who they are or what they do.

However, for those that add a tagline -- those are frequently vague or generic, too.

If you just looked at your tagline, it would not be obvious or clear how it defined your organization – its focus, its philosophical orientation, its nature.

Could your tagline be a tagline that worked for a non-profit doing similar work to yours?

If so, if your tagline isn’t clear -- you need a new tagline.

Remember, we live in a massively over-communicated world with many thousands of messages bombarding us constantly.

Yet you and I often fall into the trap of thinking of ourselves how we've gotten used to seeing ourselves every day.

We forget to consider how our prospective customers might see us.

How much time do you think you have to get a person’s attention before your brilliant fundraising copy goes into the circular file can?

I’d say 2-3 seconds.

Maybe 4 seconds on a good day.

And it’s even less time before your email is deleted.

That means your tagline has to say what you or your product does that no one else is doing, including as many of the principles of the Four Horsemen of Marketing as possible.

Just consider the importance of a tagline for a political candidate.

His or her name is not likely to offer the candidate’s value proposition to the prospective voter, so the few words in the tagline may be all you remember in order to cast an informed vote.

Whatever you might think about Donald Trump, the man knows marketing.  And I can think of no better example of an effective tagline than his Make America Great Again.

For many years I’ve helped a group called the Coalition to Salute America’s Heroes.  Their tagline is –

Providing Emergency Aid to Seriously Wounded GIs in the War Against Terror.

There are dozens of national veteran organizations, but the Coalition is the only one that provides emergency aid to seriously wounded GIs in the war against terror.

They “own” a category.

And the tagline differentiates them from all other national veteran organizations.

Your tagline is critical to your marketing success.  Consider these attributes –

A good tagline gives you ownership of your category

No other organization can say what your tagline says

Your tagline makes your value proposition clear

An effective tagline includes one or more key parts of your brand

What’s your tagline?

And is it delivering for you?

As always, I appreciate your feedback on how to make these Fundraising Tips continuously more effective for you.

Please let me know how they can be improved for you.  And please let me know what subjects you’d like me to cover next.

We had a terrific turnout from Tips readers around the world for this past Thursday’s Development Exchange first-ever Zoom video conference.

If you were able to join us, you heard strategic fundraising coach Ben Case offer his step-by-step guide to making virtual major gift solicitations.

You can click here for Ben’s slides.

Tim Kachuriak of NextAfter shared the hard data on how non-profits are conducting their online marketing during the COVID-19 pandemic, and how donors are responding.

Fascinating stuff.

You can click here for Tim’s slides.

Or, you can click here to view a recording of their entire presentation.

The password you'll need is: o5?$qB6=

In response to a quick survey of those who were on the Zoom conference, the vast majority said they’d strongly recommend this particular presentation to a friend or colleague.

Hope you get that value, too!

All the very best,

Kevin Gentry


Click here for 1st interview (conservative mistakes).

Click here for 2nd interview (solutions).

Click here for 3rd interview (first of Viguerie’s Four Horsemen of Marketing).

Click here for 4th interview (Do you want more influence?)

P.S.  What would you like to see next in these Fundraising Tips or in another video conference?

Many have asked for advice on building an effective planned giving program.  Folks from smaller non-profits are seeking training on just the fundraising basics.  Please let me know what would help you most.

And don’t forget, your colleagues are welcome to sign up to receive these emails.  Onward and upward!

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