Isn’t it great when you see new people at your church’s weekend services – Except at the end, when they walk out the doors and you wonder if you will ever see them again? No matter how welcoming your congregation is, new people always feel a bit isolated. Asking them to download a mobile app is a great way to connect them with your congregation immediately, without having to wait until the following weekend to see them again.
If your congregation has members who are only involved on weekends, a mobile app can help them connect with your church during the week. Mailouts and fliers often get thrown out, but an engaging mobile app can help you to create an online spiritual home for the people of your congregation. Here are some features that will help you build a spiritual home that will support your congregation during the week.
New members of your congregation will likely feel more welcome if they can start meeting people at events that occur during the week, and not just at weekend services. Almost every church has Bible study, mid-week services, social events and service projects happening during the week. Your mobile app is a great way to invite people to these events.
With the Events feature on your mobile app, you can automatically notify people about the event, provide details related to the time and place, have guests RSVP and being able to update people about any changes.
Another way to connect with new members during the week is to post your sermons. This way, members of your congregation can review what they heard during the weekend or listen to their favorite messages, to get inspired all over again. Your mobile app will allow you to post your sermon as a text file, an audio podcast or a video. Users can view or listen to the sermons right on their apps.
Donations and Fundraisers
Make it is easy to donate, by providing a link to your church’s online giving page. You can also set up ecommerce functionality, to promote any merchandise that your church produces. This helps new members to feel involved, because they can support the church and get some branded items, like shirts and coffee mugs.
Here’s a real world example of combining online giving with mobile.
Through a pilot project sponsored by PocketPew and Tithe.ly, we worked closely with Hope United LA to revamp one area of their digital strategy by launching a mobile app.
One of the most positive results was the growth in giving. When considering all the factors, stats and data, the integrated mobile app and Tithe.ly e-giving solution that combined mobile giving with other online and offline giving tools increased giving by over 80%. The number of people giving digitally doubledover this three-month period, as well.
Push notifications allow you to send messages to the users of your app as required. These work well in emergency situations, when you have to cancel events or services, but they are also great for engaging with your audience, by letting them know about new content. You can issue updates about events and new sermons or you can just use push notifications to send inspirational messages.
Email is also a great way to engage with new members. If you publish a newsletter via email, you can grow your audience by asking the users of your mobile app to subscribe, when they download the app to their phones. This is a good way to reach out to your contacts on multiple communication channels.
Your church’s mobile app is a great tool for making newcomers feel at home. Inviting new visitors to your weekend services to install your app on their phones is a great way to begin an ongoing relationship. Your app can become an online spiritual home for your congregation every day of the week.