Text to give made its popular debut with United Way at the Super Bowl in 2008. A few years after that online payment processing companies began offering it to churches as a giving option.
We became convinced that this method of contributing to ministry was more than a passing fad and released it in 2016 as a part of our online giving services.
Industry enhancements to the texting infrastructure in recent years have opened up exciting new ways for churches to use texting beyond mass communication and giving. Here is a list of the ways that Churchteams clients are using it.
Giving. The advantage of texting is that donors do not have to download an app or even create an account. If they do set up an account, they will be able to give simply by texting an amount. We’ve observed that the percentage of texting to give is roughly the same as what people used to put in the offering anonymously. It’s a great method for people to give who don’t have cash or checks. It is also an easy way for them to set up recurring giving when they are ready.
Mass texting. General mass outbound messages can be sent free through email. Sending texts through a more familiar 10-digit phone number carries a small cost, but is more reliable and has better support from the telecoms.
Chat. Ask a question in a workflow, personal, or mass text. Give people the opportunity to text their thoughts during a sermon or message. These responses are managed inside the Churchteams application. This keeps staff phone numbers secure and provides a text history.
Registration and forms. Create registrations for events, or forms for anything and give people the option to register by texting a keyword. Once people realize their phone number identifies them and completes most of the form for them, texting will become their registration method of choice. Great for digital connection cards which can also be set to automate a follow-up workflow.
Communication workflows. Frequently used text messages are created and saved as templates. These can be personalized to include the recipient’s name. A workflow is set up to send these messages in sequential order based on other actions like filling out a registration. Guests and members can text a keyword to receive this series of texts - and/or emails. Perfect for guest follow-up, sermon follow up, Advent preparation, prayer or devotional reminders, and much more.
Check-in. As members pull into the church parking lot, they text CHECK and receive back a link that takes them to their unique page to check-in. Adults check-in for classes, serving, and worship, while kids check-in for their classes. Click send and 1) attendance is taken, 2) name tags are printed, 3) they land on a digital bulletin web page, and 4) their kids’ security code is texted to them. All at once.
Link. This feature enables you to add the URL to any content or application page inside or outside Churchteams and assign a keyword for access by text. Great for things like a directory, Bible app, messages archives, livestream, and other media pages and resources.
App. Download and save the link to our App, or just text a keyword to log directly into it. This is where people manage everything about them in the database and beyond. This includes: follow-up tasks, giving, groups, serving schedule, registrations, groups, communication preferences, update personal info, and access to resources you link to the app.
Recent upgrades now allow us to leverage your church’s landline phone number to be used for text-to-church. Your staff and many of your core people already have that number in their contacts. Now they can use it not only to call the office, but to text it as well and automatically receive whatever information or action they need.