Around the world, technology has opened new doors to connect with your congregation. It may have begun with digital outreach, but now it goes far beyond that. Text-to-give software is a new way that technology is enabling more support and involvement.
And it's doing it in a way that speaks to today's generation of parishioners. With a congregation spanning young and old, text-to-give is a method of giving that will speak to almost every generation of your church.
Of course, many churches are apprehensive when it comes to adopting new technology. If you're wondering whether text-to-give software is worth implementing, here are five statistics that might convince you.
1. Over 97 Percent of Adults Text Every Week
The simplicity and familiarity of text-to-give are definitely its biggest benefits. With most, if not all, of your church members already texting regularly, there's no doubt that they'll be able to catch on fast.
Over 97 percent of adults text at least once a week. That means the adoption of a text-to-give campaign is seamless with no learning curve or barriers. Participating only takes a few clicks. In fact, the easy donation process is one of the best aspects you can market when pushing your campaign to the congregation.
No clunky forms or overwhelming steps. It's extremely straightforward. That's what places text-to-give as one of the biggest methods of donating — especially over long distances and to urgent causes. Churches, in particular, stand to benefit from the implementation of this method thanks to its sheer accessibility. People crave simplicity, and text-to-give provides it.
2. The Average Response Time Is Only 90 Seconds
On average, 90 percent of text messages get opened within three minutes. The average response time once opened is roughly 90 seconds — compared to 90 minutes for email. With 91 percent of Americans owning a smartphone, there is no doubt that texting is highly accessible. Plus, with push notifications, it's highly unlikely that the recipient will miss your text messages. Surveys say that 7 out of 10 churchgoers use text messaging.
All of this makes for extremely high open rates, click-through rates, and conversion rates. Compared to email, a text message is more likely to get opened overall and more likely to get opened quickly. It also makes for straightforward, easy action. Most of all, you can better control when donors receive your messages as push notifications get sent immediately upon receipt. That is unlike email inboxes, which can sit for hours or even days before donors check back in or take any action.
This all links to the high efficiency of text-to-donate campaigns. Plus, using a responsive design can help double giving by making the giving process even faster and more seamless.
3. Nearly Half of All Mobile Pledges Come From Text Links
Mobile pledges make up a large portion of giving. In fact, mobile giving has gone up by 80 percent since 2013. Because of its popularity, by simply making sure your website is mobile-responsive, you could increase donations by 126 percent.
With that in mind, you can drive even more mobile pledges by using direct text messages. After all, about 49 percent of mobile pledges originate from links sent via text. Call centers drive the other 51 percent of mobile pledges. But as times change, the world of giving is certainly starting to shift in favor of text-to-donate instead.
If you do not already enable mobile giving by having a responsive website, you are missing out on a huge opportunity. This is the first step in driving more engagement across all generations of your congregation. There's no question why.
Not only do the majority of Americans change addresses every year, nullifying direct mail efforts, but they also use less cash and fewer checks. It is essential that your congregation has a way to give using cards, with card being the preferred method of payment for over 80 percent of them.
4. Text-to-donate Campaigns Average $107 per Person
Don't get fooled into thinking that a text-to-donate campaign will only drive mediocre results. Implementing a text-to-donate campaign will certainly prove worth it, with donations averaging $107 per person.
So, knowing the numbers, it's surprising that the average nonprofit organization only has 63 mobile subscribers for every 1,000 email subscribers. While texts have a great response rate and high accessibility, organizations just haven't begun to take full advantage of this powerful form of outreach.
It's definitely worth investing in growing your SMS list if you haven't yet. Since 57 percent of people who view a video of a nonprofit end up making a donation, there is no doubt that you can find interesting ways to market your church on social media and other platforms to help encourage text donations.
You can also help create a sense of urgency for campaigns or cultivate a stronger sense of community by using text as a means of updating donors on progress. For instance, if fundraising for something specific, you can send progress reports along the way that point out both how much you have raised so far and how much more you need.
Continue to thank recipients who have given by making them feel included and pointing out how their contribution has fueled the progress. Encourage recipients who haven't yet donated to participate in the campaign. To do so, emphasize why it's important that you meet your funding goal or get their support.
5. You Can Target Your Messaging Using Demographics
With a list of SMS donors to share your campaigns with, you'll find that building up your database is easy. A simple text-to-give donation form can gather extra details for you, including a donor's full name and email address. You can also get other information from your donors, collecting notes about how much they give, how often they give, and how long it's been since they last donated.
In turn, you will get to target your messaging based on these details, which will lead to even better results. Since the majority of your donations will come directly from individuals, you will find that collecting certain demographic information to build up your database is extremely beneficial.
For instance, about 15 percent of donors give once a month or more. However, this seemingly small percentage accounts for over half of the money organizations receive. A branded giving page makes a donor 42 percent more likely to opt into recurring giving. That bumps the average household donation from $1,250 on a non-recurring basis to $1,788 with a recurring donation. That's a small difference to the donor that adds up to $538.
Knowing your donors well can help you find opportunities to convert one-time donors into recurring donors. Plus, it gives you the chance to better connect with donors who are already giving at least once a month.
You can also time donation requests better with personalized information. For instance, many churches send requests during the last three days of every year when 10 percent of all charitable giving takes place. However, you could see better results by timing donation requests based around on how frequently a person donates or whether or not they gave in the past.
This provides you with many of the great benefits seen with email marketing, but wraps it all up in a highly convenient text message that donors will not hesitate to open. One study finds texts have an open rate more than four times greater than email.
As your church welcomes new generations and their families, it's essential that you find ways to stay connected with every member of your congregation. Text-to-give software is one way to do just that. By giving your members a new way to connect with and support your church's programs, you're making the donation process simpler and more accessible.
We are so sure of the effectiveness of our text-to-give software that we promise to increase your donations by 10 percent or more in the next six months. All we need is a 30-minute consultation to get your organization started.
Interested in learning more? Reach out to NewFire Giving today.