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The trend is your friend.  I started my career in finance, and that phrase was pounded into my head.  If you are unfamiliar with the term, it is used primarily in gauging the direction of the Stock Market.  Investors look for existing trends believing they will likely continue, thus making any buy or sell more effective.  The better you are at reading the trends, the better your ability to ensure that your financial portfolio is safe, sound, secure, and growing.

When it comes to giving, the trend can be your friend.  The full version of this statement, “The trend is your friend, until the end when it bends,” clearly illustrates that changes often disrupt our trends.  We all learned hard lessons about this when COVID washed across the American church landscape.  Suddenly we all had questions about the trends in our giving.  Where do you go for answers?

To help you answer that question, we are announcing a partnership with the premiere generosity software company. MortarStone.  MortarStone integrates with your ChMS, allowing you to track giving patterns at deeper levels and gain insights that help you fully fund your ministry.  Combining our platform with the resources of MortarStone will help make the trends in giving your friend.

I recently interviewed MortarStone’s Co-Founder and CEO, David Thoroughman, with questions about MortarStone’s platform and how churches can utilize it to find trends that will improve giving.  Here is the interview.

Morgan:  David, we are looking forward to this partnership between the Gyve family and MortarStone.  Can you give us a summary of the services MortarStone offers?

David: MortarStone’s software gives churches a holistic of generosity. Not only do we help churches track giving trends but identify unique opportunities that encourage engagement and increase funding. Our analytic framework assesses increases and decreases in giving as well as areas that are flat. Using the reporting features, churches can make more educated decisions and forecast future funding needs.

Morgan:  What do you guys recommend that churches track when it comes to giving and how does your system help with this?

David: Our system tracks giving from all donors at your church. We segment your givers into ‘Giving Bands’, which identifies how much each household is giving per year. Within these bands we identify First-Time Givers, Lapsed Givers, Core (Faithful) Givers, and Top Givers and provide comprehensive reporting on each of these unique segments. We recommend that our churches build engagement strategies around these donor groups that foster generosity discipleship.

Morgan:  OK, I’m intrigued, but I suppose the real question is, what do you do with that data?  How can that help increase giving?

David:  Great question! We’ve helped over 2000 churches track over $20 billion in giving for the past nine years. Our churches typically see a 15% increase in giving in one year of using our software. Once a church sees their giving data, we walk them through benchmarking and goal setting for each KPI (Key Performance Metric). For example, we recommend a church has a 50% giving retention level year-over-year. Using MortarStone’s acquisition charts, churches can see if they are retaining or losing donors each month. Based on their retention, the church can use MortarStone to create a list of households that have decreased or stopped giving in the last 90 days. Giving is a key indicator of what might be happening in a donor’s life. A pastoral connection can then be made with each lagging or lapsed household to determine where the need lies. We’ve seen MortarStone churches experience incredible growth in engagement by reaching out to minister to these givers.

Morgan:  Thanks David, we are looking forward to this partnership helping our clients increase generosity.

David: Thanks for this opportunity and we’re offering all Gyve churches FREE access to MortarStone. Just visit this link to sign up today: trends https://mortarstone.com/mortarstone-analytics-gyve/

Let’s help make your trends your friends, not your enemies.  With our platform and MortarStone’s analytics, we believe you can identify the trends quickly in your giving so that you can make adjustments.  The mission of your church is too critical not to know your trends!

Morgan Mudge

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