Engaging Every Type of Giver: Maximizing Success of Your Church

By | Clarify the WHY

Whether you are a pastor or a leader within your church, you know that it can be challenging to raise money while focusing on meaningful missions. Although you'll likely want to focus most of your energy on missions that benefit those in your community and beyond, these meaningful objectives require financial support.

Since each member of your congregation is a unique individual with his or her own habits when it comes to charitable giving, it rarely makes sense to use a one-size-fits-all approach to reach everyone. By understanding what motivates your audience, you can speak to their individual needs for the success of your church.

In some cases, people are sporadic givers, whereas others are consistent impact givers. Regardless of who walks into your church, here's how to engage each type of giver.

Want to Engage Different Types of Givers? Here's How

In order to receive consistent financial support, you must actively communicate with those in your church. Although you most likely see the majority of givers on Sundays, you're no longer limited to this one day in terms of engagement.

In today's digital world, it's imperative that you provide those in your church with multiple options and methods to give. Although there's software that will make this a reality, you also need to be clear in terms of your message. That is why you must first understand who it is you're speaking to based on each type of giver.

As you have likely noticed, there are a number of different givers that support your ministry. These include:

  • Reluctant givers who don't give at all or give rarely
  • Casual, sporadic givers who often give based on an emotional response
  • Regular givers who support the church on a consistent basis
  • Thoughtful, impact givers who go above and beyond in terms of their generosity
    While you'll want to take a specific approach with each giver, regardless of who you're speaking to, ensure that communication remains open and that you are consistent in terms of taking ownership. As a pastor, for instance, you'll want to be open about your church's budget and core objectives so that your members better understand the financial health of your ministry.

When aiming to target those who are reluctant to give or do not give often, it's important that you make these types of givers feel secure. Let them know that their contribution, no matter how small, will be put to good use — and that they matter in terms of the church's overall vision. The key is making people feel comfortable enough that they can ask questions — transparency is key.

Also, studies have shown that asking for a donation but then encouraging payment later can increase giving among reluctant givers.

In terms of those who are key donors, meaning those who contribute on a regular basis, it's important that you nurture these individuals. Of course, you'll want to show your appreciation and gratitude. However, you'll also want to encourage open dialogue. So, let them know how their contributions impact the church in terms of positive progression. Always tie their donation to a sense of purpose, and be open about the outcome, providing key details in terms of their generosity.

So, whether you're discussing the needs of the church with a new giver or an impact giver, know who you're speaking with in terms of their own emotions, motivations, and behaviors. In doing so, you will strengthen bonds all while funding key missions that benefit all.

If you're ready to reach more people, all you need is take 30 minutes of your time. We can help you increase your giving by at least 10 percent. Contact us today to learn more!

Online Giving for Churches — 10 Top Tips

By | Clarify the WHY | No Comments

A growing number of churches are now looking into different ways to raise much-needed funds. Gone are the days of simply relying on a collection plate to fund maintenance and staffing costs. Online giving for churches is more prevalent than ever.

But a lot of churches are struggling. In order to survive, they need to explore new and innovative ways of raising funds — many of which are online.

By promoting online giving, you can open up a completely new revenue stream for your church. Here are 10 tips to get you started.

1. Create an Eye-Catching Website

If you don't already have one, launch a website to create an online hub for all your charitable programs. Keep it simple and easy to navigate, and fill it with images of your church and your congregation. Most importantly, give people a reason to keep coming back, such as regular updates, a blog, and transcripts of your services.

Place a giving button in a prominent location on your website. Make it eye-catching, big, and obvious. If online giving for churches is simple and quick, more people will give.

2. Promote Online Donation at Every Opportunity

It's important to tell churchgoers about all the different ways they can donate online. There are several ways to do this, and they're all very simple. For example, you could make one or two announcements during a worship service. You may also want to mention online giving during the offering.

If you don't already have one, create a bulletin or newsletter. You can make digital and paper copies for regular distribution to your worshippers. Be sure to include detailed instructions about how to donate online. Use your social media accounts to keep people informed, and print informational flyers to hand out at the end of every service.

3. Hold a Digital Offering During a Service

Some of your worshippers may not be familiar with the process of online giving for churches. A great way to teach them how to give is by holding a digital offering during a service. Ask your worshippers to access your donation page on their phones, and take them through the process, step by step.

It's probably best to ask for the same donation from everyone to keep things simple. Start with a modest amount such as $5. Once people have given once, they're more likely to continue doing so going forward.

4. Make the Online Giving Process Mobile-Friendly

More than half of the world's internet traffic originates from mobile devices. If your online giving process isn't mobile-friendly, your church could miss out on a lot of precious cash.

While there are some very capable responsive website themes and platforms available, making a “mobile first” website is always the best option. There's a good chance that more than half of the visitors to your website use a mobile device for access. It makes sense to design your website specifically for smaller screens and adapt upwards — rather than the other around.

The use of mobile devices for online giving is at a record high. According to The Millennial Impact Report, 84 percent of young adults prefer to give online.

5. Drive Traffic to Your Website

You could have a fantastic church website, but if people aren't visiting it this counts for very little. At every opportunity, remind people about the site and what's on it. Talk about it during every service, and include the website address in every bulletin and newsletter you produce. And reach out across your social media channels to encourage people to log on.

Also, make sure your website is SEO optimized. This is a technical term for making a site attractive to search engines. There are several ways to do this, including the use of keywords, the inclusion of quality content, and the insertion of a few authoritative links. The most cost-effective approach involves hiring a professional to carry out an SEO audit for you.

6. Develop a Brand

Although you may not know it, your church already has a brand of its own. But unless you take control of the branding process, you could be missing out on donations. There are several ways to brand your church, including the creation of a logo, the use of a color scheme, and the use of a particular type font.

As StoryBrand-certified guides, we reference the StoryBrand framework to inspire giving. We create a clear, concise message that connects with worshippers. We can help you to maximize your church's fundraising potential.

According to Network for Good, branded giving pages perform around 67 percent better than unbranded pages. While the idea of creating a brand identity might seem a little strange at first, it could encourage a lot more people to give on a regular basis.

7. Introduce Automated Giving Options

A lot of people like to ensure they give to their church regularly. In the past, this mostly involved cash and check payments made in person. But you can make the process of recurring giving a lot easier for your worshippers.

Use a payment provider that gives people the option of making recurring payments with a debit or credit card. This functionality gives worshippers the opportunity to decide how often they give and when to stop.

8. Thank Your Donors… Every Time

It's important that you show your gratitude every time someone gives to your church. As well as being the right thing to do, it leaves givers with a sense of accomplishment. And an appreciated donor is often a regular donor.

There are several ways you can express thanks. For example, you could direct donors to a “thank you” page immediately after their payment goes through. Or you can send them a warm-hearted and personalized “thank you” email. It's even possible to thank people by text using an option within the payment provider's software.

9. Add Printable ‘I Gave Online' Cards to Your Website

The last thing you want to do is make online givers feel awkward when people are passing around the collection plate during a service. One way to alleviate this tricky situation is by giving online donors an “I gave online” card. This doesn't just put people at ease, it tells others in the congregation that online giving is an option.

10. Choose Technology Based on Your Desired Outcomes

There are many new and exciting technologies that can inspire people to give. But how do you know they're right for you? Rather than concentrate on the features included with apps and other technologies, think about your desired outcomes.

Consider why your worshippers decide to give. Sometimes giving is inspired by human connections. Other times it's about fostering community spirit or helping the less fortunate. The emotions that prompt giving are very important. If your technology helps you to appeal to these emotions, there's a very good chance you'll achieve the results you're looking for.

This is a lot to take in. Managing online giving for churches takes a lot of time and hard work. But you can make more time for your worshippers by managing the entire process with a giving software solution such as NewFire Giving.

text to give

5 Mistakes Churches Make with Text to Give Campaigns

By | Clarify the WHY | No Comments

Churches should make sure they're taking advantage of fundraising by utilizing text messaging. Thanks to the proliferation of mobile devices and popularity of text messaging, text to give campaigns are particularly effective ways to reach members and ask for support.

By the end of 2019, more than 4.68 billion people across the globe will own mobile phones. On top of that, mobile users send more than 560 billion text messages every single month. If your church decides to use a text to give service, however, make sure you avoid a few common mistakes, including the following:

1. Omitting the Option to Make Recurring Gifts

Don't miss this opportunity: When you send a potential donor a message encouraging them to give, make sure you include an option to make the donation a recurring one. If they give once, there is a chance they may want to give to your organization again. Make this opportunity easier for them by giving them the option to make recurring gifts via text. Studies show that recurring donors are 440% more valuable than one-time donors, so don't pass up a chance to bring one in.

2. Capping Individual Donors' Donation Amounts

Some organizations also decide to cap donor amounts, which is a huge mistake. Choose a service that allows donors to give as much as they want. Capping donor amounts doesn't encourage people to give; it limits the amount of funds you can get. So, seek to ensure that your text to give campaign puts no limit on the amount that a person can give to your church via text message.

3. Failing to Offer a Next Step After People Give

Even if your donor doesn't want to become a recurring donor, they may want to become more involved in the church. Maybe they would like to volunteer their time or learn more about who you are and what you do. It is a mistake for your church to simply offer text to give campaigns that don't offer next steps or follow up. Instead of simply offering the chance to donate, consider offering more information, opportunities to become involved, or encouragement to step up and give their support to the congregation.

4. Using a Text to Give Service that Charges Big Fees

You will need to use a text to give service that allows you to text donors and then receives their funds. There are many options for these services, but you should avoid ones with high service fees. Some platforms can charge substantial fees, which end up totaling close to 10% of all of your donations received. This takes a huge chunk out of funds that were given to help your church and is a cost that you could ultimately avoid if you are able to find a text to give a platform that does not charge high fees.

5. Failing to Specify Where People Are Giving

You should be specific about fund utilization during your next text to give campaign. If there are different options for giving, make sure you specify what they are and how a person can select where they are donating. You may ask for donations for a specific fund that is going towards a purchase, cause, or to an annual operations fund. No matter what the reason, makes sure you stay transparent. People like to know how their money is being used, which makes them more willing to donate.

If your church is taking advantage of text to give campaigns but you've been having trouble raising money, the tips above may help. By implementing this advice, you can rest assured that you're reaching the right people at the right time in the right way. Your next text to give campaign should be a success for your congregation.

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