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Faith Leaders 3min read

How to Operate Like a Megachurch on a Small Church Budget

Megachurches produce a highly polished product — a perfectly manicured experience. Every detail seems immaculate, from the smiling parking lot attendants to the elaborate stage full of talented, world class musicians.

Of course, most of us don’t work in megachurches. It’s tempting to think that there’s no use in trying to emulate the megachurch experience with the comparatively tiny budget of a much smaller church. While it’s true most of us can’t afford to build a McDonald’s drive-thru on our church property or hire full-time baristas, certain “megachurch” approaches to ministry can be done without a megachurch budget.

Here are three such approaches that small and medium-sized ministries should consider.

1. Invest in Your Online Presence

Mobile Giving How to Operate Like a Megachurch on a Small Church Budget

The megachurch digital experience is pretty stellar, and looking that amazing comes at a price. While you don’t have the funds for an in-house web team or to hire a high-end design firm, you can still invest in your online presence. Looking good online takes a little effort, but it doesn’t have to take much money. Even if your budget is nonexistent, using, Squarespace, or WordPress you can build a respectable, modern website for free.

Facebook and other social media platforms are free, too. Commuicate messages, share information, or stream your services on Facebook and Facebook Live. You can also link your Givelify mobile giving app so individuals can give through your Facebook page. We at Givelify are happy to help you do this if you need assistance!

2. Outsource What You Can

Consider letting someone else do the heavy lifting on some big-ticket service elements. Some megachurches rely heavily on video content during services, much of which they produce in-house. You probably don’t have a paid video producer, but services like Worship House Media have libraries full of video clips that can be used to similar effect.

Megachurches also offer classes and courses on a million topics. You have limitations, but you also have access to services like RightNow Media, which includes polished video series from many well-known speakers. Using these instead of developing your own materials allows your church to host more classes in a year than you’d otherwise be able to do. Leaders from your ministry can wrap up the studies each week with in-person discussion and Q&A.

3. Implement Mobile Giving with Givelify

Church Giving on the Go

Giving at a megachurch isn’t going to look like the offering time at your average old-fashioned country church, and megachurches don’t restrict gifts to just cash and checks. No, in fact they may push electronic and mobile giving over traditional giving methods. There’s a reason for this push, too: modern giving platforms come with a helpful real-time dashboard to view incoming donations and records, and many reduce the amount of work church staff has to do (tallying, recording, depositing, recordkeeping).

You might think this mobile giving service would be cost-prohibitive for your church, but unlike other mobile giving services, with Givelify there are no setup fees or ongoing monthly subscription or maintenance fees. Even the real-time dashboard is included free of charge. Givelify simply takes a small fee (2.9% plus 30 cents) from each transaction. Users can enjoy mobile giving through the Givelify app, from your church’s website, or by using social giving links you can share on social media or in your email newsletter.

Megachurches do certain things very well. These three simple elements commonly used by megachurches can be integrated in any church and may help you to better meet your church’s goals this year — without breaking the bank.

About the Author

Matt is dedicated to making the world a better place. He works passionately to help charitable causes use mobile technology to raise the funds they need. In addition to his role at Givelify, he volunteers with the Southside Animal Shelter and Kentuckiana Pug Rescue.

Matt Chandler