Many churches may be feeling all too familiar with the ‘summer giving slump’, the time of year when people vacation and giving often goes down as a result. What can you do to reverse the trend in your church?
You can pray about it and hope for the best, or you can pray about it and develop a plan to overcome it. If you’re interested in the second approach, here are some practical ideas for cultivating more consistent generosity during the ‘dog days’.
Five easy steps to overcoming the summer giving slump
- Capture email addresses — today. Make sure they’re up to date. Many of the other ideas for overcoming the summer giving slump rely on you being able to communicate with church members when they’re not present. Email is still the primary, and most effective, way to accomplish that.
- Utilize video messaging services to share updates. Changing the way you share updates with your church members is a way to increase engagement. While someone might delete an email that’s all text, they might take the time to watch a short video.
- Remind people that ministry still happens even if they are not there. Continue to share stories of life change and Kingdom work throughout the summer.
- Find new and creative ways to cultivate generosity. Summer can be a financially taxing time for many families as they pay for vacation or travel. Use it as a time to change up the way you encourage people to give. For example, Cross Point’s Dollar Club is a way to show the impact that giving just one dollar can make.
- Ask for special giving when ministry needs rise above planned expectations. Summer is a time when the cost of unexpected ministry needs can keep you from being able to accomplish everything you set out to do. In those times, be honest with church members about the unexpected costs and ask them to consider giving to help overcome those challenges.
- Encourage people to establish recurring giving. Most people don’t plan to stop giving over the summer. They just get distracted. They have the best intentions to ‘make it up’ when they come back in the fall, but we all know that rarely happens. Address this up front and let people know that they can set up regular giving patterns that match their preferences. Consider the approach Healing Place took and add the option to your online giving page as well.
Don’t just resign yourself to the same old summer giving doldrums. Some prudent planning and creativity could turn the whole season around for your church!
What have you done to reverse this year’s summer giving slump?