I know you’re excited about a new year and new possibilities, but before you jump into 2020 I want to give you 3 ideas to help you close out 2019 and even get ahead on planning for your Christmas services in 2020 (yes, I know…. It’s a long way away.)
Whether you had 1 Christmas service or 20, the best time to plan for next year is on the heels of this year’s service while the wins and frustrations are fresh on your mind. I’ve already set up a few google calendar/Siri reminders for Oct. 1 to make sure I don’t forget the things I’m thinking about now.
Here are 3 takeaways from our Christmas services that may help you plan for next year:
1. Offer more services sooner?
We had 5 Christmas services this year, and to my surprise, the largest crowds came furthest from Christmas Day
Here is the list of our Christmas services in order of attendance:
- Sunday 11:45am (Dec. 22)
- Saturday (Dec. 21)
- Thursday (Dec. 19)
- Sunday 10:30am (Dec. 22)
- Sunday 9am (Dec. 22)
I have several guesses as to why people came to the earlier services, but regardless of why; in back to back years, people have chosen to attend the earlier services. So I’m wondering if we should offer more services, sooner. It may be something to consider for you too.
2. Scrape the list
This is a phrase we picked up from the amazing team at 7Hills Church in Florence, KY. The idea is simple: If you want more people to show up for Christmas, go through and contact the people in your database. This is not a new idea but possibly forgotten.
Research has proven that it’s easier to “market” to someone who already has a relationship with your church. If someone is on your list, that means they have engaged with your church in some way and have given you permission to contact them.
This year, we chose to contact anyone who has engaged with our church in the last 3 months and had a team of volunteers make a personal phone call. It allowed us to have personal contact and, in some cases, pray with people over the phone. And yes, we saw people come to our Christmas services that we hadn’t seen in a while.
It’s simple but effective.
3. Is Bigger Better?
After preaching 5 times this year, and watching our team work so hard to create a fabulous Christmas experience, I loved it! But I can’t help but wonder if it’s the best strategy for us moving forward.
I’m not saying we won’t offer Christmas services. Of course, we will, but I’m not sure we will try to “Wow” people with a Christmas production type of service. We may go back to a more traditional “Christmas carol/Christmas story” kind of service and less of a production.
I’m just thinking out loud for our church, so please don’t hear something I’m not saying. Obviously, high-level Christmas services are working all over the country, but for me, I’m wondering if the effectiveness matches the effort required. Would something simpler still provide equal value?
These are just a few thoughts/reminders I’m thinking about Christmas as we close out the year, and I don’t want to forget them next year. Make sure you do the same somehow. You’ll be glad you did.
P.S. You’re going to start seeing fewer emails from me. I will be sending out monthly emails instead of weekly emails in 2020. I still want to provide as much value and resources as possible. Just wanted you to know
Thank you for everything you do to help build the church. I hope 2020 is your best year of ministry yet!