The Millionaire Next Door

Stop Acting Rich: Focus on Major Targets

In a previous blog, Stop Acting Rich: Follow Harry’s Lead, I mentioned a fund raising event that I had attended. I was invited because I had volunteered my expertise about how to market to millionaires.  However, several of the other patrons of the school’s construction fund who were in attendance were all quite wealthy, like Harry. But these wealthy patrons, as well as the other volunteers, do more than donate. They are all quite efficient at asking affluent people to contribute to the fund.

I am often told by people who try to market to the affluent that it is difficult to find affluent prospects. Perhaps they are looking in the wrong places. Harry for example is not a member of a country club. Nor are you likely to find him aboard an expensive ocean cruise. But you will often find people like Harry at meetings that are held on behalf of noble causes like the one discussed here.

Noticeably absent from this meeting was anyone from the investment industry, the insurance industry, the legal profession. Why?  Because no one from these industries volunteered their time or money. Perhaps they were just not aware of the construction fund. But they should have been, given the local press’ coverage.

As a marketer, you don’t have to be wealthy to contribute. You can contribute your time and effort by asking others to donate. By associating with people like Harry, you will benefit in many ways. Helping noble causes enhances one’s image and reputation. Plus there is a greater probability of eventually generating new business from such relationships.  But, remember, first things first. Focus, focus, focus on helping the cause before worrying about your own economic needs. Remember too that the value of having someone like Harry, the former president of his trade association, as a referral gives one credibility among his association’s thousands of members.  He and his fellow members may even ask you to give a speech at the poultry association’s next meeting!

2 thoughts on “Stop Acting Rich: Focus on Major Targets”

  1. I absolutely agree. I recently read the book “Networking with the Affluent” and I immediately got involved with a noble cause here in my community that needs someone who can bring in the big donors.

    I think most sales professionals who attempt to target to affluent members of the community underestimate the value of being a team player in this field.

  2. As someone who never expected to be affluent at a young age (okay, I consider 44 young!), I have found the TV-driven stereotype to be completely false. I have met more affluent people “behind the scenes” working for charities than anywhere else. You’d walk right by them on the street, assuming they didn’t have money. I don’t know if this characteristic holds true, but it seems many wealthy people feel a responsibility to give back. Thanks for this great post and blog!

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