Seven Proven Ways to Increase Giving

Seven Proven Ways to Increase Giving

For some of us, money can be a hard or awkward thing to talk about.

It can make us uncomfortable. Or we can feel like we're making other people uncomfortable. But the reality is—giving is a biblical principle. It is something that God calls His followers to practice. And it is what allows church staff to continue to spread the good news of Jesus Christ.

Many people are actually very generous, but may not be aware of how they can be giving.

Here are seven simple ways you can increase giving in your church.

 

1. Introduce a new way to give.

Not everyone likes to give in exactly the same way.

Milennials, for example, rarely carry cash or checks on them. While, on the other hand, older generations (X + Y) are more accustomed to carrying checks and cash on hand. So, they are more likely to give to their local church through this method of giving.

Neither method is wrong—but it's important to realize that no two people will give in exactly the same way.

With the technology available now, there are several ways to have people give to your church.

There’s the traditional cash/check method, online giving, giving kiosks, and even texting to give! The easier you make it for people, the more likely they are to give.

2. Plan a donor appreciation event.

Once people are giving to your church, a resident, a mission, etc. it can be easy to get used to the fact that people are giving. We can start to let thoughts creep in like “well, this person should be expected to give to this cause.”

The reality is, people don’t have to give. Whether they are tithing or giving in excess of a tithe, they are doing so because they believe God is calling them to and they want to be obedient.

But that doesn’t mean it may be easy for a donor, or that they eventually may feel that it is time to financially step back from giving.

A great way to counter this is to plan some sort of donor appreciation event! It can be small or large. Maybe an “awards show” with some music, skits, and sharing what donor’s contributions are doing. Or a small dinner letting your donors know how much you appreciate them.

53% of donors who stop supporting an organization do so because of a lack of communication.

Don’t let this be you.

3. Emphasize automated giving.

Let’s get real.

Most of us hate dealing with bills on a monthly basis. Adding another financial commitment to our list of to-dos can be a little overwhelming for some people. Especially for those who are more forgetful.

Automated giving makes it extremely simple for someone to create a budget, figure out what they can give every x amount of weeks or months, and step back and let an automated system do the rest for them.

4. Create an annual funding plan.

The worst time to talk about money to your church or donors is when you need it.

You shouldn’t be desperately asking your church for money because you’re on the brink of bankruptcy, but have a plan well developed before then, so you know exactly what your financial needs are and can ask for specific numbers when approaching donors.

5. Say thanks early and often.

As we talked about earlier with donor appreciation events, donors need to feel appreciated. While bigger events are exciting and can be beneficial, you don’t need to host an event every time you want to say ‘thank you’ to your donors.

An old-school, handwritten note is probably the best way to do this. It’s personal, a nice surprise from junk mail, and something not a lot of people do anymore.

We also have several different thank you card digital files in our store that you can download and start using today.

6. Fix your website.

Your church’s website is also a wonderful place to incorporate giving into.

Again—the easier you make it, the more likely people will give. If it’s taking longer than 2 minutes to give, you’re leaving donations on the table. Make sure you’re using a system that is quick and user-friendly for your donors.

Also, people might be more hesitant to give to a website with a color scheme so bright that it hurts your eyes, or to www.giveourchurchmoney.com.

So, be mindful with both the design and content. If you have asked everyone and no one on your church staff, or volunteers, has any sort of marketing, website, or content experience then consider hiring someone with these skills.

7. Help people with their money.

We don’t recommend planning your sermon series around money and giving because you want your church to increase giving.

However, as followers of Christ, we try to make every decision in our lives based on biblical principles and what Jesus has to say. There is a lot the Bible says about money. And whether it’s a sermon series, hosting a Financial Peace University class in your church, or some other financial teaching, it will definitely prove to be beneficial when your donors are managing their money in a godly way.

So What's Next?

Feel like your church should be growing, but it's not? From someone who used to be a pastor and church planter, I know it can be frustrating.

Ultimately, church growth is up to God. But are we doing everything we can to ensure our church is healthy? How do we overcome the barriers we feel are in front of us?

We know you care deeply about leading a healthy growing church because it means leading more people to Jesus. As a result we created a free guide to breaking barriers that will bring clarity and help begin to alleviate your frustrations.

Get your FREE copy of the Senior Pastor's Guide to Breaking Barriers today.

Three Things Every Church Donor Wants

Three Things Every Church Donor Wants

Local churches can do ministry because of the tithes and offerings from people who care. Without these donors, your church probably wouldn’t exist.

Because generosity is commanded and expected, it’s easy to overlook the donors in your church. But that would be a big mistake. No matter how many programs and initiatives you have going on at your church, don’t ignore or under-appreciate these people.

A lot of churches spend a ton of time, energy, and money trying to attract NEW donors when what they should do is invest more in our existing donor base. It might seem like the way to increase giving is to reach new donors, but that’s not the case. Developing your existing donor base is a better strategy.

Roger Carver recently said this: You have less than a 2% chance of a gift from a brand-new donor who doesn’t know you. But you’ve got a 20-40% chance of a gift from lapsed donor, and a 60-70% chance of a gift from an active donor.

In other words, the people who are already giving or have given in the past are far more likely to give again. That means the time you invest in donor retention will have a greater payoff than time you spend on donor acquisition.

It’s not just about raising money or good stewardship. It’s about prayerful and thankful appreciation of those who support the church.

Here are three things every donor in your church needs from you.

#1 – A heartfelt and personal thank you.

One study found 53% of donors who stop supporting an organization do so because of a lack of communication. Some in that group reported never getting thanked at all.

There’s simply no excuse for this.

I know it sounds simple, but like so many other things, simple is often effective. Your donors need to hear you say thanks.

Social media updates, stage announcements, and group emails are not enough. Your donors need a personal thank you. You must take the time to thank people individually for their contributions to the church. One at a time, not in bulk.

Old school, hand-written notes are still the best way to do this. Anytime someone gives to your church for the first time or makes an unusual contribution, someone should send a hand-written, hand-addressed, hand-stamped thank you note.

Have some designed with your church logo. Keep a stack nearby and whenever you process donations, take a few minutes to use them.

#2 – To know what their donation is doing.

The second thing your donors need is to know their donation is making a difference.

They don’t just want contribution statements and newsletters. They want to know that their donation is making an impact. They need you to connect the dots.

Aimee Minnich tells the story of visiting a Christian business leader who was supporting missionaries who kept asking for money, but never seemed to get traction. These missionaries had a great heart and a good mission, but they never reached the point of sustainability.

Eventually, the business donor, who felt like his contributions were a waste, declared, “I’m done with this ‘losing money for Jesus’ idea.” (Here’s the link to the full article)

I wonder how many ministries are asking their donors to “lose money for Jesus.”

Passion for your cause isn’t enough.

Donors, like Minnich talks about, want to put their money into causes that work, not just causes that matter.

The people giving money to your church need to hear stories of success. Whether it’s a restored marriage or a student deciding to follow Jesus, people need to know their dollars are contributing to the bottom line. Not just general feelings of goodwill, but specific stories of life-change.

These stories need to be front and center in your worship services, email newsletters, donor update emails, and announcements.

#3 – Inside information about the church.

The third thing your donors need from you is information. They need to know what’s going on and they should hear it before everyone else.

Information is a form of appreciation.

Think back to a time when you knew something that wasn’t common knowledge. It made you feel like an insider. It made you feel special.

Simply telling your donors what’s coming before others in the church hear it is a simple but powerful way to say thanks.

When I was pastoring a church outside of Atlanta, one of my favorite events was called the Leadership Summit. I’ve never been terribly creative at naming things.

The Leadership Summit was a quarterly gathering of all our donors and leaders. We personally invited everyone, but we threw out an open invitation for people to self-select into the group as well.

We provided childcare, catered in some food, and asked the band to lead some of the church favorites. Sometimes we had a guest speaker. Sometimes we divided up into teams and did training. Sometimes we spent most of the time worshipping.

But in every leadership summit, we gave out inside information. We told our people what was coming, because we wanted them to know first. This is where we announced our next location, our next church plant, and our next set of goals. The people most connected to our church deserved to know first.

You don’t have to do a big event to share inside information with your donors and leaders. You can send a monthly email to all your donors. You could mail a letter a few times a year. Or you could shoot a quick thank you video.

Here’s a great donor update from Vince Antonucci, the pastor of Verve Church in Las Vegas.

Sharing information is a great way to show your donors they are important. It’s a way to say thanks.

Saying thanks, sharing success stories, and communication are three ways you can value your existing donors. They need this from you. If you don’t provide it, it’s likely they will take their donations to a place where they do feel valued.

So go and find a way to get these things on your calendar. Create a simple system to ensure you do these things on a regular basis.

So What's Next?

Feel like your church should be growing, but it's not? From someone who used to be a pastor and church planter, I know it can be frustrating.

Ultimately, church growth is up to God. But are we doing everything we can to ensure our church is healthy? How do we overcome the barriers we feel are in front of us?

We know you care deeply about leading a healthy growing church because it means leading more people to Jesus. As a result we created a free guide to breaking barriers that will bring clarity and help begin to alleviate your frustrations.

Get your FREE copy of the Senior Pastor's Guide to Breaking Barriers today.

Why You Should Get More People to Give Online (and How to Do It)

Why You Should Get More People to Give Online (and How to Do It)

Five years ago, I did a keynote talk trying to convince people to move to online giving.

At the time, some of the biggest objections to emphasizing it in church were confusing technology and high fees. Thankfully, both of those issues have been solved. The technology is now user-friendly and the fees are negligible.

Online giving isn’t a gimmick or a new thing. It’s real and it’s serious. And it should be a serious part of your stewardship strategy.

Churches with healthy giving not only offer online giving, they continually emphasize it. I’m convinced you should make a concerted effort every year to get people to give online.

Here’s why….

First, online gifts tend to be larger. Our internal numbers show the average online gift is over $120 while in-person giving is about half of that. In other words, when people give online, they tend to give more.

Second, when people give online, they give throughout the week. The Sunday offering can still be an important time in your church, but churches using online giving see about 40% of their contributions happen on days other than Sunday.

Finally, churches that roll out and properly emphasize giving see overall giving increase by 15-20%. If you’re looking to increase overall giving, properly using online and mobile tools are the ticket.

Here are 7 ways you can introduce and encourage online giving in your church.

 

#1 – Set a real goal.

If you’re rolling out online giving for the first time, set an early adoption goal. What percentage of your donors do you want to move to this platform? If you want to know how you’re doing, you’ve got to set a goal.

Once you’re already using the tools, you need a usability goal. What percentage of total church giving should happen digitally? And more importantly, what percentage of total church giving can be attributed to automated, recurring contributions?

Each year, you should see this number increase.

What are the benchmarks?

25% is good.

50% is better.

75% is best.

Over time, we’d love to see 75% of your total contributions come from automated, recurring donations. That means if you cancel church that week, you could still expect 75% of normal weekly giving. That’s a great sign.

#2 – Make it easy. Make it fast.

If you want more people to give online, you’ve got to make it easy and you’ve got to make it fast.

This is a requirement for engaging millennials, but even people from the older generations will grow frustrated with complicated and time-consuming steps.

When you’re looking at your technology solution and your stewardship process, there are two things you want to look at. 

How many clicks does it take someone to give? 

Amazon increased their bottom line by billions of dollars by introducing one-click purchasing. They knew every additional click was a barrier to a transaction. That’s why they invested heavily in solving this problem.

Likewise, you should always evaluate your process to see how many steps you’re requiring. If you require a donor to set up an account before making a first-time transaction, that’s a mistake. As many as 50% of people thinking about donating will abandon the process.

Asking people to create an account is fine…just do it after their first successful transaction.

How much time does it take to give?

A few years ago, I made online donations to Presidential candidates from both parties. I evaluated the process, paid attention to the follow-up process and learned a lot. I’m on every politician’s mailing list now, but that’s another story.

I was able to make first-time, online donations to both candidates in less than 2 minutes.

That’s the benchmark for your church as well. If it takes longer than 2 minutes for someone to donate, it takes too long and you’re leaving money on the table.

So how many clicks and how much time does it take to donate on your website? You can find out right now by opening up a new browser window and making a donation to your church.

Record your screen, set a timer, and take note of how many steps it takes.

#3 – Go visual.

When you’re launching a new system or encouraging everyone to give online, it’s important to use visuals.

In fact, you want to use all communication channels available to you and support each of them with graphics.

When you’re talking about giving in the church service, put up a slide. When you’re writing about it in a newsletter, add a graphic. When you share on social media, use an image.

Here are some good examples.

Your giving provider should have sample graphics and editable files for you to use.

#4 – Make sure leaders go first.

If you want more people to give online, particularly by setting up recurring contributions, it’s important to make sure you model the way.

Set up your profile and let your church know that’s how you give. You don’t have to brag or boast, but be honest with your church. When you ask people to give online or set up recurring contributions, let them know you’re asking them to do what you and the entire staff do.

You also want to directly ask your leaders to give this way. These are your leaders and it’s always appropriate to ask them to do what you’re doing.

#5 – Ask people directly.

When it comes to talking about money in the church, a lot of leaders go to one extreme. Either they talk about it all the time, using guilt-laden tactics or prosperity theology or they don’t talk about it at all.

I know it can feel awkward to ask people to give.

We hint. We suggest. We dance around the topic. 

But what we need to do is be direct.

We don’t have to be mean or lay on the guilt, but we can be direct. Even people who aren’t familiar with church or who are new to your church know it takes money to run a church. They aren’t offended when the church provides an opportunity to give or asks people to participate.

So when it comes to asking for money, you don’t have to belabor the point but you should be clear. Here are some practical suggestions.

  • Don’t say “if you’re new here, we don’t want you to give.” That’s probably not true in the first place. You can say, “Don’t feel obligated to give.”
  • Don’t just pass the plates or the buckets without giving people context. It’s not guest-friendly to pass felt-lined plates around. Take a minute and explain what’s happening.
  • “We’re about to receive an offering” is passive. It’s not an ask. It’s an announcement that something is about to happen. Instead, ask people to participate. 

When talking about recurring or online giving, be honest and tell people, “It’s better for our church if you give this way.”   People who appreciate the church will appreciate the honesty.

 #6 – Use frequent “by the way” references.

As important as it is to ask people to give online and automate their donations, it’s also a good thing to continually remind the congregation it’s a big deal.

Whenever you set up the offering, make sure you thank people who already gave online or who give automatically through their bank. These kind of “by the way” references sound like “off the cuff? comments, but they should be an intentional part of your communication strategy.

Use “by the way” comments for giving, groups, and volunteering in your announcements, sermons and newsletters.

#7 – Think campaigns, not announcements.

Offering online giving is not the same as emphasizing it.

A lot of churches offer it – it’s almost a requirement these days. But a surprisingly small number or churches leverage the technology properly.

That’s why you should think of recurring giving like a mini-campaign you run in your church every year. A campaign lasts a few weeks and utilizes all of the communication methods at your disposal. When it comes to giving, we recommend you take the month of May and make this a big deal.

Put together a three-week communication plan involving stage announcements, testimonials, sign up cards, social media, targeted ads and more. For a few weeks, make it your mission to move as many people as possible to recurring giving.

Do this every year and make it a part of your annual rhythm.

Watch what happens and let us know how this switch goes for you. We’re always here for further questions and help.

So What's Next?

Feel like your church should be growing, but it's not? From someone who used to be a pastor and church planter, I know it can be frustrating.

Ultimately, church growth is up to God. But are we doing everything we can to ensure our church is healthy? How do we overcome the barriers we feel are in front of us?

We know you care deeply about leading a healthy growing church because it means leading more people to Jesus. As a result we created a free guide to breaking barriers that will bring clarity and help begin to alleviate your frustrations.

Get your FREE copy of the Senior Pastor's Guide to Breaking Barriers today.

Killing the Summer Giving Slump

Killing the Summer Giving Slump

It’s common for churches to see what’s been thoughtfully (or painfully) coined “the summer giving slump” where giving declines for most churches (between May and August). Many churches see a twenty percent or more hit in giving during these months due to members being on vacation, going to BBQs, traveling with family, etc.

As you can imagine, for any pastor, knowing your church income is going to drop by over 20% is a terrifying future to look forward to.

Of course, you can be diligent and plan for this. You can think “this is normal” and be OK with it. Or, you can choose to believe that it doesn't have to be this way and take steps to put the summer giving slump to rest, once and for all!

It’s for those pastors and church leaders that we offer this piece. We hope some of the practical tips and advice we share with you will lead you on a path that does away with the summer giving slump once and for all.

7 ways to inspire giving this summer:

1. Teach on generosity leading up to the summer months.

Part of your teaching on generosity can include making the church aware of the historical decline in attendance and the impact on giving. It’s OK to be honest with the church. It’s OK to show them what the decrease in giving means and what could be done if this decline wasn’t there. It's also OK to share scriptures about tithing in the Bible. The one caution I’d share with you is to be sure this messaging isn’t the bulk of your teaching. Be sure to keep this portion informative and non-guilt-trip-y in tone.

2. Plan for a GREAT summer at your church.

Summer is an amazing time of year that many look forward to. A time that families come together! BBQs! Swimming. Late nights out at the park, beach, recreation center, movies, and so much more. It’s a time to rejuvenate and enjoy some of the things God has blessed us with – family, fun, and the great outdoors.

Instead of chalking it up, why not make the summer season an unforgettable one at your church? Sure, some folks will be traveling, vacations will come, people will be busy with a lot of activities, but don’t let that stop you from making your church services, programs, and experiences amazing.

Plan for it. Give people something they’ll remember and look forward to for years to come.

Here are a few ideas (h/t LifeWay):

  • Put together family fellowship events that happen on Saturday or Sunday after church – lunch, followed by water slides, inflatables, volleyball, etc. Challenge your people to invite their neighbors to attend church and stay for the meal and game time.
  • Plan a “summer nights series” of outdoor worships and fellowship.
  • Stage an outdoor Christian music concert.
  • Produce a Christian dinner theatre dramatic production.
  • Why not morph your church-wide picnic into a city-wide event, with special invitations to VBS and church daycare families?
  • Do a free outdoor family movie night, projecting on a large exterior wall.
  • For the Sunday prior to July 4th, plan a “red, white and blue jean” Sunday.  Invite local government leaders to attend your worship service, present them a gift, and voice a prayer for them.
  • Organize a Wii sports league with multiple projections on a large exterior wall.
  • Do a reading club or weekly kids' story hour in the church library.
  • Organize a community bike ride that ends at the church with a big lunch or dinner for all involved.
  • Invite the community to join you for outdoor tournaments, such as volleyball, horseshoes, softball, bocce ball, 3-on-3 basketball.
3. Introduce online and mobile giving before summer hits.

Remember, $0 are received from people who miss church if there are no digital giving options available.

Online giving and mobile giving tools allow your church to give anywhere, anytime. Right? Of course, that all sounds nice, but do people really give when they are not sitting in service? We had the same question so we decided to dig into the data.

We just recently published significant church giving research that clearly shows churches can overcome the summer giving slump if they effectively implement online and mobile giving tools.

Many churches see a 20%+ drop in giving during the summer, but those churches effectively using Tithe.ly actually saw giving steadily climb straight through the summer months.

The fact is that giving people great mobile first options enables anytime, anywhere giving. Vacation, work, travel, sick, rained or snowed in, regardless of the reason, when people can give by mobile app, web, or text, they’ll do it even if they’re not in the building on Sunday morning.

The “Summer Slump” is 100% based on the fact that people have to be “in church” to give. You have the power to change that by providing your church with digital giving tools.

The key is to have online and mobile giving options in place well before summer and in early April, promote these digital ways to give.

4. Educate people on recurring giving.

Across the Tithe.ly platform, 13% of all giving is set up as recurring. That’s not bad, but it could be so much better!

By providing online and mobile giving you’re making it as easy as possible for people to set up recurring giving, but the real key to getting a large percentage of people set up to give automatically is to education them on the feature and ASK them to do it.

Be bold and ask that people turn on automated weekly or monthly giving! And thank them in advance for doing it.

5. Use e-mail effectively.

No matter how amazing your summer church schedule is, people will still go on vacation—and they should! That’s where the power of email comes in. During the summer months be sure to really hone in on using email effectively. Our suggestion is to send weekly emails that are fun, useful, and informative.

You could easily send weekly emails to the church that include:

  • A reminder that the latest sermon is live so they can listen online.
  • A weekly bible study or article.
  • The results/stories of impact from your weekly programing.
  • Upcoming events/info on church activities.
  • A simple and not-in-your-face mention of the fact that people can give online.
6. Show appreciation.

There’s incredible power in gratitude showing itself in the form of public appreciation and saying those magic words, “Thank You”.

In fact, LOTS of really awesome things happen when we show our appreciation and sincerely thank someone for what they do. Here are a few of those awesome things according to one publication:

The Thanker

  • Produces positive emotional state
  • Increases sense of well being
  • Triggers ‘feel good’ hormones
  • Re-enforces virtuous cycle in your brain

The Thankee

  • Feels higher levels of self worth
  • Triggers greater desire to help Thanker
  • Triggers helpful behaviors toward others
  • Appreciate being needed
  • Feel more socially valued

As you move through the summer, be sure to thank people for their engagement, service, and giving. For those not in attendance, be sure they hear the “thank you’s” via your weekly email, social media, personal text messages, and the old fashioned phone call.

7. Report back.

If you started the summer letting people know about the fact that giving declines and that you’d like the church to rally around you and stop the summer slump, then it’s only appropriate that you share the results!

That said, you likely have a lot of information to share and good news to encourage people with as God was at work during that time. Use the months after summer to encourage your church with what God did during the summer and inform them on how giving went on at the same time.

My guess is that if God was at work, your church had an incredible summer, you preached the Good News, and you gave people the ability to give online or via mobile app, then giving likely went UP!

So What's Next?

Feel like your church should be growing, but it's not?

Ultimately, church growth is up to God. The question is, are we being good stewards of what we've been given? Are we doing everything we can to ensure our church is healthy? How do we overcome the barriers we feel are in front of us?

We know you care deeply about leading a healthy growing church because it means leading more people to Jesus. So we created a free guide to breaking barriers that will bring clarity and help begin to alleviate your frustrations.

Get your FREE copy of the Senior Pastor's Guide to Breaking Barriers today.

Creating an Annual Report for Your Church

Creating an Annual Report for Your Church

It’s that time of year again.

It’s time put together an annual report, something to document what God did in your church and communicate plans for the future.

It may seem like a time-consuming exercise, but the process and the end result are worth it. To help speed things along, here are some tips for putting it together, lots of great examples and some practical suggestions on how to use it throughout the year. 

What should go on your annual report?

  • Stories. Make sure your report doesn’t look like a financial report or a business presentation.  Tell stories of what God did in the lives of real people.  Remember, facts may inform but stories will inspire.
  • Pictures.  Pictures tell stories, so make sure you fill your report with lots of them.
  • Numbers. If you track attendance, giving, baptisms, or groups, create some charts to show the numbers. There are a LOT of people in your church who care about this.
  • Plans. Your annual report provides a great opportunity to cast vision for the future. Lay out some of the plans and goals for the coming year.
Here are some real-church examples.
And here are some business examples to inspire you.

What should you do with it after you make it?

  • Put it on your website, especially your online giving page and your about us page. People who give (or who are thinking about giving) will be reassured to find this information and it will build confidence.
  • Email it to new members, new donors, or new volunteers throughout the year. Again, you’ll build confidence and trust while reminding people why they do what they do.
  • Include with contribution statements. If you’re going to mail something out, you might as well make it interesting and fun.
  • Review it once or twice a year as a way to remember where you’ve been and where you’re going.

Are you making an annual report this year?

So What's Next?

Feel like your church should be growing, but it's not?

Ultimately, church growth is up to God. Are we being good stewards of what He's given us? Are we doing everything we can to ensure our church is healthy? How do we overcome the barriers we feel are in front of us?

We know you care deeply about leading a healthy growing church because it means leading more people to Jesus. So we created a free guide to breaking barriers that will bring clarity and help begin to alleviate your frustrations.

Get your FREE copy of the Senior Pastor's Guide to Breaking Barriers today.

Five Financial Emails to Send to Your Church

Five Financial Emails to Send to Your Church

Even with the rise of social media, email is still one of the most effective and efficient ways to communicate with your church.

As a church leader, you can use email to talk about money, generosity and stewardship in your church. 

Here are five copy-and-paste emails you can send your congregation:

  1. Email to thank donors
  2. Email to encourage generosity
  3. Email to encourage online giving
  4. Email to explain recurring donations
  5. Email to send to a first time donor

With each email, you will want to personalize and customize to fit your church and reflect your style. Make it sound more like “you.” And of course, don’t forget to update links.

Email #1 – Send to Existing Donors

This is an email designed to say thanks. You can send it with a quarterly contribution statement or as a monthly update. It’s full of inspiration and thanks. 

Subject:  Thank you, Thank You, Thank You…

Jane,

I’m emailing today to simply say “thank you.”

The first part of 2016 has been an amazing year for our church, and you’re a big reason why. We’ve been able to share Jesus with children, baptize numerous adults, and support lots of great people in our community. This video sums it all up.

I could go on and on about all God is doing at Cross Church, and I can’t thank you enough. I know you’re not giving to get recognition, and I know your ultimate reward is in heaven. But I want you to hear thanks here on earth. (Plus, I really hope they don’t have email in heaven.)

Your contributions are important. Your donation matters. And you are making a difference.

Thank you!

Pastor Chris

Email #2 – Send to the Entire Church

This email is designed to encourage your church in the area of generosity. Send it to everyone on your email list.

Subject: Three Reasons I Give to My Church

James,

I’m blessed to be the pastor of Cross Church. I tell people that all the time.

But I’m not just the pastor. Cross Church is MY church. We’re in a small group that meets on Wednesday nights. Micah’s small group leader is Ethan. And we financially support our church by giving a tithe. 

Here are three reasons Katie and I do this and why we think you should too.

  1. I want to be an example to my kids. Generosity is more than an attitude – it’s an action. I want my children to know that I don’t just feel generous, but that I actually give. 


  2. I believe in our mission. I believe “reaching people far from God so they can have new life in Christ” is important. Those aren’t just words on the banner in our lobby – they have a lot of meaning to our family. 


  3. I want to make a difference. When I give to Cross Church, I’m making a dent in eternity. I’m so proud of all our church is doing around the world, and I consider it an honor to be a supporter.

Those are just three reasons Katie and I give to Cross Church. I’d love to invite you to do the same. In fact, I’d love to encourage you to do what we do.

Here’s a link to our online giving page where you can make a one time donation right now or set up a profile and manage your generosity.

Pastor Chris

P.S. If you ever have questions about the finances or want more information, just let me know. 

Email #3 – Send this to your Entire Church

This is another email you can send to your church to encourage generosity. 

Subject: When you Give – We Grow

James,

I became the pastor of Cross Church in 2011 and immediately fell in love with Townsville. We loved the cool weather in the fall, the hamburgers at Franks Hamburger Stand, and of course…the amazing people.

The other day, I heard there were more than 1.5 million charities in the United States. There are so many needs out there and I know it can be overwhelming. Whether it’s rounding up at the grocery store or calling an 800 number after a commercial on TV, you have so many opportunities to give.

But there really is nothing like the local church. Jesus said, “I will build my church and the gates of hell will not prevail against it.” Out of all the ways Jesus could have delivered his message of grace to the world, he chose the local church. 

We’ve seen God do amazing things in the last four years. Here are just a few examples of God’s goodness in our community:

  • 28 people have been baptized.
  • 332 children have heard the Gospel at Vacation Bible School.
  • 73 members from Cross Church have gone on International mission trips.
  • We’ve given $23,233 to local ministries and new churches.


  • We’re doing an important, eternal work and I would love for you to be involved. That’s why I’m not embarrassed to ask you to support the mission here.  

You can go to this page and make a donation. You can also create a profile and set up a recurring contribution. It’s safe and secure, and it will really make a difference at home and around the world.

I hope you become a generous person (God loves that!). And I hope you will be a part of what God is doing at Cross Church.

Pastor Chris

Email #4 – Send to Existing Donors

This email is designed to encourage someone to move from in-service or online giving to regular, recurring giving.You could send it to everyone who gives, but hasn’t yet set up regular, recurring donations.

Subject: Do you know about this?

James,

Hey, it’s Pastor Chris here.

I wanted to be sure you knew about this feature on our website. It might make giving a little easier for you. And to be honest, it would be a huge win for our church.

I’m talking about using our website to give online. It’s really simple (instructions below) and it’s 100% secure.

Three Steps to Setting Up a Giving Profile

  1. Go to this page.
  2. Create a profile. You’ll be able to login anytime and see your giving history and make changes if needed. It really is simple.
  3. Set up your donation details. You can choose to give one time or set up weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly contributions. Your information is safely encrypted and processed.

We give to Cross Church this way and I’d love to invite you to do the same.

Blessings!

Chris

Email #5 – Send to First Time Donors

This email is designed to thank a first time donor. You should personalize the name and update the links. There is a question at the end designed to begin a conversation.

Subject: Thanks (plus two links and a question)

Jane,

There are more than 1.5 million charities in the United States, and you chose to give to Cross Church.

That’s amazing, and I just want to say thanks. 

All of us here are so honored to have your support. My prayer is that God would take your contribution and do amazing things in our community.

I wanted to send you two links I think you might find useful.

I’d also love to ask one simple question. You can hit reply and your answer will come straight to me.

What made you decide to give?

God bless,

Pastor Chris

Take a Next Step

Feel like your church should be growing, but it's not?

Ultimately, church growth is up to God. Are we being good stewards of what He's given us? Are we doing everything we can to ensure our church is healthy? How do we overcome the barriers we feel are in front of us?

We know you care deeply about leading a healthy growing church because it means leading more people to Jesus. So we created a free guide to breaking barriers that will bring clarity and help begin to alleviate your frustrations.

Get your FREE copy of the Senior Pastor's Guide to Breaking Barriers today.