The Offering Is Not Dead; It’s Different Series
This is the fourth and final in a series of posts; all directed to help you improve your offering time!
The single most important thing you can do to increase giving at your church is to know how to elevator pitch your offerings.
This has never been more apparent than now in the COVID19 world we are ministering in.
57% of churches have learned the importance of Elevator Pitching their offerings. The accounting firm CapinCrouse recently did a study that asked churches, what methods has your church implemented to collect, maintain, or encourage offerings? 57% said,
“Increased discussion around offerings during online services. Emphasized that offerings are an act of worship, told stories of how the gifts are used, featured people or organizations that have benefitted from congregational giving, etc.”
In my first post of this series on the offering I wrote, “In over 20 years of helping churches increase generosity, I have found that the easiest way to do that is through improving the offering time.” I have advised churches to take time before they receive the offering to connect for their attendees how a dollar given at your church impacts the world for good. I call that connecting the dots. To accomplish this I have used an “elevator pitch,” strategy to produce short but powerful offering talks. Using this format I have helped numerous churches improve their offering time and thus see an increase in giving.
You doubt that? Here is what one pastor wrote me a few years ago…
“Giving at our church can be summed up with one word: phenomenal! Giving is up 30%+ this year. We connect the dots every week, often using your ‘Elevator Pitch,’ offering talks. This has been life-changing for our church as we no longer scrape around for money every week.” – Brian Hughes Sr. Pastor PCC Church
You might not increase your giving by 30% but you too can increase your giving IF you change how you handle the offering.
OK, now that I have your attention let’s start by discussing what an elevator pitch is and how that impacts your offering talk.
The elevator pitch arrives from the idea that you are riding in an elevator when a big shot company executive enters in. You have maybe thirty seconds of time with him or her. What you say in those thirty seconds of riding the elevator will mean the difference of whether you get a full hearing later or are simply forgotten. The idea is to comprise the key information about you into a thirty-second burst of energy that will “sell” your idea or you.
So, pretending I am on the elevator with you I might say, “Ah, Pastor Smith, you might have heard that giving to churches is off. In fact, your church might be experiencing a decline in giving. When giving declines, ministry initiatives are threatened. Lives are impacted. Yet the churches we are partnering with have seen their giving go UP. We work with good churches and make them better. I would love to talk to you about how we can increase your giving.” That is better than simply, “Hi, my name is Mark and I would really like to talk to you about my company.”
Elevator Pitch Your Offerings
A few years ago I read a book called, “The Influential Fund Raiser,” in which the authors talked about what they called the elevator pitch. The elevator pitch is that short statement you can make in less than one minute. The authors stated that every elevator pitch needs three elements, think, feel, and do.
Here are the three elements as they relate to the offering…
Think – You want to get them thinking about the offering. You are making the case for why people should give to your church. Good offering talks connect intellectually with donors’ heads.
Feel – You want to touch their heart as to why the offering is important. The best way to do this is to tell the stories of life change giving fuels. The goal is to connect emotionally with donors’ hearts.
Do – When it comes to the offering you want them to reach into their pockets and give! OK, now we want them to reach for their phone but you get my point. After you have connected their head and heart you can ask for their hand!
My point is that every offering needs an elevator pitch helping people see the need for giving. A good offering talk takes as little as seconds to a couple of minutes.
Now more than ever you need to make the offering time a thought-out part of the service; much the same as the sermon and other aspects of worship. A well-planned offering appeal will result in maximized donations. Spend some time weekly thinking about new and creative ways to elevator pitch your offering times. Work hard to make the offering special and I think you will find your offering will be fuller!