The FellowshipOne Blog

Leveraging the Ramifications of Generational Giving Habits

For the last few weeks, we’ve been discussing the different giving motivations and preferences of the generations. You may be wondering if it’s really important to think about this. Here’s why it is:

According to the Planned Giving Design Center, roughly $41 TRILLION will transfer from the Silent Generation, Baby Boomers, and Gen X to Generation Y and Z over the next couple of decades. The church cannot ignore this inevitable migration. If the forecasted decline in church growth occurs, it will be even more important than ever for churches to stay in step with technological advances.

Currently, Generation Z consists of all children 13 and younger. They have felt the effects of a long recession and tumultuous times. Despite teething on technology, this group has not seen the affluence of the previous generations. These kids are likely to become frugal, hard-working, and unentitled, like the first Silent Generation, but, like Millennials, will be reliant on digital giving modes. They are incredibly technology-focused:

These numbers are expected to grow as Gen Z grows up.

What does this mean for churches?

Church donation stability will depend on technology. The first and easiest strategy is offering online giving, which is simple and cost-effective. It reduces staff labor and is proven to increase giving levels. It will increasingly be the preferred mode of giving as the generations shift.


Secondly, as we’ve been discussing in this series, targeted messaging can increase the use of online giving specifically, and also giving in general. Targeted messaging simply means making sure everything you say and do around giving contains elements that will appeal to specific age groups and is located where each group is most likely see your message.

  • Website
  • Bulletin
  • Signage/Kiosks
  • Verbal mention of the availability of online giving just before passing the plate

Targeted messaging may sound like a lot of extra work, but it’s actually the opposite. Just as technology shapes how your donors give, it can work for you, too. Fellowship One software allows you to group people by age or other demographics, and quickly send email messages crafted to appeal to just that group.

BONUS: If you have enjoyed this series and would like this content in one convenient download, click on the image to the right to immediately receive our whitepaper: Bridging the Gap, Creating Donor Messaging to Reach All Generations.


Gen Z: A Look at the Technology and Media Usage of Today’s Teens