10 ways to leverage technology this Christmas
As a child, I remember Christmas being an enthralling experience. Our home was transformed into a winter wonderland with a beautiful Christmas tree, decorations, and delicious holiday treats. By the time Christmas day came around, the excitement and wonder were almost too much to handle!
My parents, however, had a totally different experience. There was a ton of activity happening behind the scenes—pulling boxes from the garage, decorating, budgeting, wrapping presents, baking, and so much more. For reasons that I didn’t understand as a little kid, they were always exhausted by the time Christmas morning came around.
This experience is very similar for church leaders and their congregations. Church staff and volunteers spend a ton of time and energy to ensure their Christmas events are inviting, beautiful, and meaningful.
This year, however, you and your team don’t need to exhaust yourselves in order to create an amazing Christmas experience. Today’s technology can improve your processes, streamline your communications, make your content more engaging, and reach more people than ever before!
10 ways technology can help this Christmas
Christmas is a joyous time of year as we gather to celebrate the greatest gift to humanity—Jesus Christ. It’s also a time when more people will attend church—and donate to ministries—than nearly any other season of the year.
This makes it critical for churches to do the most they can to make their Christmas services successful. Let’s take a look at how technology can help save you time, make your services more attractive, and help more people experience the joy of the gospel message this Christmas.
1. Create an online Christmas hub
During the Christmas season, the first thing everyone wants to know is when are your Christmas events, where they’ll be held, and what they can expect. But if someone visits your website or social media, can they easily find that information?
To make your Christmas information as accessible as possible, turn your church’s website and mobile app into a digital Christmas hub. Add a special page or section on your website and mobile app that announces your service times, special events, and other important details such as childcare, guest speakers, and how to contact your church with any questions.
You can make your Christmas hub more engaging by including beautiful graphics. Download your free Winter Wonderland Christmas Design Bundle from Igniter!
2. Design your Christmas theme
You’ve selected this year’s Christmas theme that will influence your sermons, musical selections, and how you lead your people to celebrate the birth of Jesus. In the past, creating custom graphics that visually reinforce your Christmas theme required lots of time, effort, and someone with design experience.
Fortunately, Igniter Media has crafted beautiful graphics and videos that you can use everywhere, such as welcome slides, sermon background art, printed bulletins, or even social media posts. Here are some examples of professionally-made graphics that you can use to instantly make your content stunning:
3. Design & deliver an Advent devotional
Christmas is a special time that encourages people to reflect upon spiritual and eternal matters. Consider creating a daily or weekly Advent-focused devotional to walk your community through this special season.
You can choose a variety of formats for delivering your devotional: written, video, or audio. These should include:
Scripture readings for each theme of Advent: hope, preparation, joy, and love
Advent prayers to focus and prepare their hearts for the birth of Jesus
Advent hymns to rejoice in Jesus’ birth and anticipate his second coming
Tools like the Subsplash Platform make it easy to create and share your Advent devotional via your church's branded channels such as your website, mobile app, and email. You can also create social media posts to share out portions of your devotional.
4. Promote your Christmas events online
Technology has made it quite easy to promote your holiday events online to a broad audience. We recommend adding information early to your website, mobile app, email newsletters, and social media in order to build excitement and create anticipation.
When creating your promotional material, be sure to include beautiful and engaging imagery. Now that Igniter Media offers Canva templates, you can quickly customize your graphics, and overlay messages, and create a lot more interest in your promotional materials!
Another powerful way to get the word out is through networking. Have your congregation and ministry partners share the news on their social media channels. You can even consider running paid Facebook or Google Ads to reach people in your community who may be interested in attending church during Christmas.
5. Automate Christmas communications
Ask any church staff or volunteers working on your Christmas teams, and they’ll tell you how overwhelming it can be to manage communications. An important way to save time and energy is by scheduling emails, text messages, and push notification reminders before and after your events. This ensures important messages don’t get lost in the shuffle of everything going on.
Another important step is automating your follow-up communications after each event. Be sure to thank people for attending in person or watching online. Send special messages to your first-time visitors and add them to your automated visitor follow-up communications.
6. Live stream your Christmas events
Use technology to livestream your Christmas services, allowing members who can't attend in person to participate remotely. Additionally, recording the services enables you to share them later for those who missed them.
Churches can use Subsplash Live to stream to their social media channels, church websites, mobile apps, and TV apps without needing any complicated equipment. This ensures you can reach people on their preferred devices and platforms. The Live Stream Chat feature allows viewers to have meaningful conversations in a safe environment, and giving prompts encourages people to give online without having to leave their live streaming experience!
After the live stream is over, Subsplash automatically archives your stream as on-demand content in your church’s media library. You can tag each of these videos with speaker names, scripture verses, and topics in order to make them easily searchable and accessible for people to watch later.
7. Level up your event management
Thanks to modern digital tools, creating event registrations, adding them to your calendars, sending invitations, collecting payments, and even following up with attendees can be a simple and straightforward process.
Better yet, when your events are integrated with your church management software, you can easily see the most current information on your people, know who is or isn’t participating, and easily communicate with them.
8. Encourage generosity with online giving
Did you know that 30% of a church’s annual donations are made in the month of December? There are multiple reasons for this, such as people feeling the Christmas spirit of giving, or perhaps they want to make their tax-deductible donations before the year ends.
Whatever the reason, it’s crucial for your church to make it as simple as possible for people to show their generosity. Here are some steps to ensure that people can give if they want to:
Enable the Guest Giving feature to make it easy for visitors and others to make a one-time donation without having to create a giving account or new login
Activate your recurring donation feature to help people give even if they’re traveling or not able to make it to church during the holidays
Set up multiple funds to allow people to choose where their donations are allocated to
Send thank-you messages to donors via email or text messaging to show gratitude and encourage people to give again later
9. Simplify volunteer management
Technology has transformed how church leaders manage volunteer rostering, schedules, and service planning. For example, church management software from Subsplash allows your church to assign roles to your team members, set up rosters, send reminders, and get notifications automatically when someone accepts or declines their volunteer requests.
Your teams can easily find and join volunteer groups, chat, and share documents with Subsplash Messaging. This encourages instant connection and facilitates meaningful conversations in a safe and secure environment. Beyond this, you can plan your service from start to finish, share those plans with your team, integrate with CCLI’s Songselect, and share songs and sheet music.
10. Streamline child check-in processes
The last thing you want to see when a surge of visitors comes to your church is a long queue of parents and children waiting to get checked into children’s church classes. If your church is using a manual check-in station or outdated software, it’s not too late to switch to a more modern child check-in software.
This solution allows you to quickly set up a check-in station, kiosks for registering and signing in children, and printable tags or tickets for parents and children. The best check-in software allows you to also choose a private PIN number that is needed for checking a child in or out. All of these features ensure your kids and parents are safe, happy, and can enjoy their time at your church.
The right church tech for this Christmas
Whether your church is using none, some, or all of these church tech tools, now is a great time to make sure you have the right software in place to make this Christmas run more smoothly, reach more people, and make a bigger impact than ever before.
Now you can bring all of these tools together on a single platform—Subsplash One. You also get a Customer Success team that will help you set up your tools, implement them, and regularly check in with you and your team to make sure things are running smoothly.
Over 17,000 churches and organizations partner with Subsplash to reach people with the gospel message. Find out how your church can leverage Subsplash tools this Christmas!