While Christmas and Thanksgiving are moments we carve out of each year for celebration, togetherness, and family, they can also be distracted by consumerism. Lots of food, lots of gifts, and lots of decorations can make it difficult for your community to focus on generosity and sharing with those who have a lot less this holiday season.
This year, use #GivingTuesday to remind your community of the value of generosity while pouring into a cause that will really make a difference in your local area or even across the world. But don’t just ask people to donate the Sunday before #GivingTuesday. Encourage generosity the right way by using a strategy that will help get your entire community on board.
Use this checklist to help make this year’s #GivingTuesday campaign a success.
Getting Ready for #GivingTuesday
Two Weeks Before…
1. Update Your Digital Presence
Your first inclination may be to announce your #GivingTuesday campaign from the stage, but there’s a step before that. It’s important that people can find information about your #GivingTuesday announcement the moment you’re done talking about it. Expect people to take out their phones right after the service or on the car ride home and search your website and app for information about your campaign.
Be preemptive and make sure your giving platform has a fund designated for the campaign and #GivingTuesday information is pinned to the home screen of your church website and app until the campaign ends. In all communications, be sure to highlight three talking points: What your church plans to do with funds raised, the various ways people can donate, and what the church did in previous years.
2. Announce It From The Stage
Make the announcement from the stage two weeks before #GivingTuesday. Align your message with what your website and app say and if you have a staff member that can really get your auditorium excited and laughing use them. The message is much more likely to stay with people.
3. Send Weekly Emails
Send weekly emails with your #GivingTuesday talking points. Don’t forget to add a link that will take them to your giving platform where they can donate directly. Also include contact information for the campaign’s point person in case people have questions about #GivingTuesday that aren’t addressed in the email. Here’s a sample email you can use to get people both informed and excited about #GivingTuesday this year:
Subject Line: You Can Help Change Lives Across The World
[Our church name] is so honored to partner with [Organization Name] for a second year to help with the clean water crisis in Southern Mexico. Currently, 800,000 people have limited access to clean water and mortality rates are rising. Last year we dug 81 wells and provided purification systems for 200 families, but there’s still a lot of work to get done.
That’s why this November 27th on #GivingTuesday our two campuses are coming together to raise $200,000 to guarantee fresh water for these families long-term. You can donate today right through Wednesday, November 28th. Donate using the blue envelopes given out at weekend services, using text-to-give, our church app, or website. Or simply use the link below.
Donate today (link to your giving platform)
Tell your friends! Forward this email and share it on Facebook and Twitter.
PS: Every cent matters and every person talking about the Mexican water crisis is an agent of change in their community. Donate here (link to your giving platform).
4. Social Media Magic
Social media may not be the best place to type out a transcribed sermon on generosity, but it’s perfect for sharing your sermon video or your #GivingTuesday announcement. Take some time to schedule posts that highlight your talking points and how much you appreciate your community’s generosity.
Make posts short, easily digestible, and honest—and don’t forget to add a few photos from your campus to make things more visual and engaging! Here are a few sample posts:
- Flint, Michigan is $X away from clean water. Our goal of $200,000 can help 800 families get access to clean water long-term. Donate today #GivingTuesday (your link to donate)
- Help us plant 500 vegetable gardens in Haiti this Christmas. Donate today #GivingTuesday (your link to donate)
- Last year we dug 85 wells in Burundi. This year, we’re aiming for 200 wells in Liberia. Donate today—every cent counts #GivingTuesday (your link to donate)
5. Update Your Church Calendars
Add #GivingTuesday to your church calendars. Be sure it’s on all physical bulletins in the church building, as well as your website and app calendars. As an extra step, send out email announcements to your small group leaders walking them through quick #GivingTuesday talking points they can bring up during small group meetings.
Remind People About #GivingTuesday
10 Days before…
6. Push Notifications Are Your Best Friend
As with any successful fundraising campaign, the critical balance is between reminding people to participate in a way that doesn’t bombard them with a tsunami of messages. You can achieve the perfect balance by using push notifications through your church app to remind your community about #GivingTuesday. Send a unique notification every 3 or 4 days. If you don’t have a church app or the app you use doesn’t have push notifications, you can talk to one of our experts to see how your church can get a custom church app and push notification resources.
Be sure to use push notifications early on Black Friday to remind people about your #GivingTuesday campaign one more time. People will still go out shopping, but this small reminder can help shift people’s holiday thinking from spending on expensive items and more toward what their generosity can help accomplish in the community. Here are a few push notification templates you can use:
- Get your generosity on this #GivingTuesday! Help the (our campus name) campus serve the (our city name) Food Bank well. Tap to donate.
- Looking for a way to give back this holiday season? Tap to donate to #GivingTuesday.
- “$5 feeds a child for a day. (Our Church Name)’s goal is $X—Ready to make a difference? Donate today.
Two Days Before…
7. One More Announcement
Be sure to announce #GivingTuesday at your weekend services after Black Friday. Talk through the money raised to date, the campaign’s goal, and other opportunities to participate such as post-#GivingTuesday volunteer opportunities linked with the project the campaign is funding. Maybe you’re building a new wing to accommodate more childcare, be sure congregants know how to register to help with construction after Tuesday.
8. One More Time For Push Notifications
Use three push notifications on Tuesday to remind people about the campaign, give a midday update on funds raised, and the total amount raised at the end of the day.
The Next Day…
9. Thank Donors and Volunteers
And now it’s time to thank your donors and volunteers. All 3 digital forms of communication come in handy here. On Wednesday, craft a social post across all of your church’s social platforms thanking volunteers and donors. Use the same language for a push notification as well as an email you can send a few days later. In case a few laggard donations come in after #GivingTuesday, a delayed email send will include the final giving total after all donations were counted.
#GivingTuesday is an ideal time to reach out to your community and revisit the value of generosity. Maybe your church plans to plant a new campus or you’re funneling money raised to the local shelter, we hope this year’s fundraising campaign is a huge success. For more information about how a custom church app and push notifications can help your church encourage generosity and participation this giving season, talk to an expert today.