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We want to help all of our parishes succeed. We already know that the recommendations below will work. To that end, we are asking you to pay particular attention to the following activities to help with your fundraising communications.

The call for donations on the internet, via online collection or crowdfunding, is a real opportunity for your parish, which requires following certain steps:

Fundraising in Coronavirus Times: How to Stay Sharp. Download Ebook

Get your Social Communications Toolkit here.

We have already pre-created many of the important links that you would need to start your fundraising this week.

Giving Page Link Electronic Pew Card Texting Number Engagement Link for Prayer Requests and Contact Information For more information or to customize, visit: www.givecentral.org/admin

We will talk about some these steps in detail below, but here are some online promotion tactics

-Unify your website and personalized giving page for the event. To attract website visitors to your donation page, you should make your website’s GiveCentral’s “Donate Now” button visible on your homepage

-Highlight a section “Ways to Give” on your website with all the important links and additional information

-Add links to your live stream and details of your support team here as well

-Incorporate info about your donation form in your emails

-Include a link in your social media posts

-Mentioning your online donation page in your live stream and phone calls

In general, donating by mobile is a collection tool that is more generally part of a wider campaign in addition to other tools (blog, mailing, newsletter)

Our mobile giving process - Text-to-Engage (Advanced text-to-give) is a very simple process.The donor just has to send an SMS to the number you send, with the amount of his donation.

For example, to donate $50 for Easter, your donors can type Easter 50 and send it to 1234567890.

We have also set up sample texting keywords for key events on your dashboard.

These keywords are already a part of your Text-to-give setup. Using keywords like “Sunday” and “Easter” will allow your donors to make gifts for Sunday and Easter. Using the keyword “Quick” allows your community to make prayer requests and to share their contact information.

Social media channels are highly visual channels, so share images and videos when you can. You can even try a Facebook Live to engage your fans.

We have noticed that the campaigns that can rally about 30% of the funding immediately upon launch have a higher success rate. Therefore, we recommend that the initial 30% funding comes from your existing network and supporters. Share your campaign in the following manner with your inner network as soon as you create it and encourage them to share it on their social media networks as well .

Facebook:

Log in to your Facebook account. Click on Create Post on your page timeline. If you do not have a page, you can use your personal profile similarly.

- Share your message and giving links as shown in the example below and click Post to share. You can also add images to your post by clicking on the Photo/Video option under your message box :

Sample message for live stream

Twitter:

- Log In to Twitter and click on the Text box to edit.

- Copy the text in the text box and click Tweet to share.

Linkedin:

- Log In to Linkedin and click on the Start a Post.

- Copy the text on the given text box and click Post to share.

Snapchat:

- Open Snapchat and take a Snap as normal. Over on the right you’ll see a little paper clip icon; tap it.

- You’ll see a list of URLs that you’ve attached before and that are on your clipboard. You can also add a new one by typing it into the URL bar.

- You can add one link at a time. So create a new snap for every link related to your fundraiser.

Instagram:

- Instagram accounts with less than 10k followers cannot add links to their stories. Therefore, you can use the option of adding links in your bio and paste the text in the shown space.

Youtube and Vimeo:

- When you upload your recorded video stream to video sharing platforms like Youtube or Vimeo, make sure to add giving links to the description box.

How to share your personalized links on social media channels. Some of our parishes have been doing this well. Here are some examples you could use.

This video guides you on how to find your sharing links on GiveCentral dashboard and add them to your live stream.

Plan for the week ahead and personalize your communication. Create sample emails to reach out to your donors multiple times. You could -

  • Check in with your donors and see how they are doing
  • Share useful help content and links where they can connect as a community. Use Engagement Link for Prayer Requests
  • Let your supporters know that you are fundraising online. Use your Giving Page Link and Electronic Pew Card
  • We have also created sample communication templates your parish can use to reach parishioners. It is a part of your email communication templates on your dashboard.
  • Please ask your parishioners and visitors to use the keyword “Quick” along with your Text-to-Engage number. Those that wish to engage more with your parish will respond. It is a great way to build community. Ask them also if there is someone in their family who needs prayers or a home visit.
  • Please make sure that within your live streams, within your social media, within your website and with all messaging that you are included these links. We have already pre-created many of these links for you.

Use these sample templates to draft your communications:

Sample Messaging within an email:
As we continue our Lenten journey, consider how you are using these forty days to prepare for the coming of Christ. Please continue to share your prayer requests. Please continue to invite others to engage with us by sharing this email and this link. Please continue to support our ministry online and via text [INSERT TEXTING INFO AND KEYWORDS]

Sample Messaging within a video stream:
We are blessed by your commitment to our faith community. To that end, I would ask each of you to share your live stream video with your community and this number %TEXTING_PHONE_NUMBER% and encourage everyone to use the keyword “QUICK” to share prayer requests and contact information. We are trying to reach out so that we can help each other and pray with each other in this time of need. I also ask you to consider remembering your parish at this time. Using %TEXTING_PHONE_NUMBER% and the keyword “SUNDAY”, you are able to continue to support our ministry.

You could also include your texting number and a link to donate on your homepage and share this link with your supporters.

OFFERTORY
After the Gospel and Prayers of the Faithful, which is the traditional time for Offertory. You can share your %TEXTING_PHONE_NUMBER% along with the keywords "Sunday" and "Quick" for your community to share their gifts for your ministry. Ideally you can do this with the number showing on the screen.

AT THE END OF THE LITURGY
I would also show that information again at the end of the liturgy. You can share your %TEXTING_PHONE_NUMBER% along with the keywords "Sunday" and "Quick" for your community to share their gifts for your ministry. Ideally you can do this with the number showing on the screen.

Express Communication is a feature that allows you to add Smart Tokens in the email.

That means, you can add suggested donation amounts to drive conversions.

Deep dive into donor behavior and target specific donors based on their last activity (donors that have not made a contribution in a year, or donors who have not given to a particular event).

It’s easy to add Smart Tokens into your email messages,

Sending an Email using a template

1. Open GiveCentral Admin Portal.

2. In the Menu on the left click Communications.

3. Select Send Emails.

4. Ensure that information in the From Name, From Email, and Reply To boxes is correct.

5. Select who you would like to send it to (Uploaded Email List or Labels).

6. Enter Subject.

7. Add sender’s email to the More Email box.

8. Select and attachment if you would like (limited to 1).

9. Select Global for GiveCentral’s sample templates or select Personalized for a template you have created or edited.

10. Double check that the template populates in the body correctly.

11. Replace PASTOR NAME with the Pastor’s Name and replace the address tags at the bottom with your address.

12. Ensure that the Button link is directed to the correct place by right clicking on the button text and clicking edit link.

13. Save as Draft.

14. Click Review and send .

15. Deselect all emails and reselect your email

16. Click send.

17. Verify that the test in your inbox looks good.

18. Click View Drafts under Communications on the left-hand menu.

19. Ensure that all information is correct.

20. Click review and send.

21. Review list of Recipients and the email itself.

22. If ready, Click send.

Adding Email List

Contact Jack Schermerhorn and he will help upload your list of email addresses

Email: Jacks@givecentral.org

Phone: (847) 973 - 6448

Here's how to use GiveCentral Communications to send an email to your parishioners.

A pew card is your window to communicating better with your parishioners. Traditional pew cards are usually placed in the benches of the church for the congregation to see and read. A digital pew card is more or less the same as the traditional one, the only difference is that the former can be accessed digitally and online.

What information does it have?
A digital pew card helps you give information. The digital card will have sections for the person’s name and other personal details, this helps in finding out if there is an addition to your church members. Your digital pew card will also have details about remote giving with links to do the same. It will brief the church members about text-to-give numbers, keywords and also help them update their contact information.

How can you use your Easter pew card/ personalized card?
As a parish, there are multiple ways in which you can make your digital pew card visible to your parishioners. You can put a link to your digital pew card on your website, you can also present it in the form of a pop up image on your homepage with a link to the digital card. Your parish can talk about it on social media and insert links on your posts. The emails and sms that you send out can have links to your digital pew card.

Where can you find it?
All locations can access their digital pew card here and use this short form link to collect personal information on the donors.

Before starting any other part of your e-giving and communications process, take the time to check the items on this list. The items listed below have been identified as critical success factors for a parish.

Download Checklist

Many churches and ministries have been using Crowdfunding over the past few years to raise funds. It is a great way to gather the support of your community to fund the needs of your church during this pandemic.

Learn more

A significant number of parishes have already implemented some creative and resourceful pastoral strategies during the COVID-19 crisis. If guidance on some basic recommendations is needed, the items offered below could be of help in formulating an action plan:

1. Ensure that you, your staff, parish council, ministry leaders, and volunteer coordinators exchange updated contact information.

2. Ensure that you and your team have the tools they need to keep on working and serving during the emergency: phones, active email addresses, computers, and a stable Wifi connection.

3. Since all aspects of life are rapidly moving online, do everything possible so that you and your team can use some of the digital tools that will allow you to conduct virtual leadership meetings, share information with your community, and provide spiritual and formation resources to your parishioners: a Facebook page, a FlockNote subscription, a Zoom account (or another similar service that will allow you to conduct meetings and classes online). If you want to learn more about how to live stream using Facebook, we have a step -by-step guide available here.

4. Ensure that everyone in your community receives a phone call from the parish letting them know that they are not alone, asking them if they need any help during the emergency, and inquiring if they know of somebody else you should be reaching out to.

5. Use the above-mentioned tools and channels of communication to share information with your community on how they can follow the Mass online, share spiritual, educational, and formation resources as well as ask for help for those who are in greater need.

6. To keep the information flowing through personal contacts, consider building a phone tree that will allow you to reach many people very quickly via phone with the help of your community.

7. Ensure that your parishioners know which means you are making available for them to be able to continue providing the parish with their gifts and donations.

Need help with any of the above-mentioned technological tools? Contact us and we will be happy to provide you with the necessary instructions and tutorials.


Additional COVID-19 resources for nonprofits

As we continue to learn more about Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) and how it’s impacting communities across the country and around the world, GiveCentral is here to support nonprofits with updates and resources to help you take steps to safeguard your employees, operations, and communities. Learn more

Success Stories: How parishes are leading the charge against Covid. 4 emails nonprofits and churches can send during COVID-19 4 tips for following up with your digital attendees.