Five things to do in July to prepare for your fall churchwide campaign

Planning to launch a churchwide campaign this fall?  If so, you’re approximately at about T-80 days to launch (assuming you’re reading this in late June and you’ve chosen your launch date wisely).  For the purpose of this top five list, I’m assuming you’ve already chosen your churchwide campaign (If you haven’t, see below for some great suggestions).

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Here are the top things to do in July to prepare for a churchwide campaign:

  1. Meet with your senior pastor ASAP to plan your host recruitment strategy for August.  Remember, if you want to maximize the number of new groups launched in September, what your senior pastor does in August is a critical factor and one of the five keys to avoiding a churchwide campaign disaster.  In order to take full advantage of the exponential power of a campaign, you’ll need to leverage the influence of the most influential person in most congregations.  See also, How to Make the HOST Ask – the 2012 Version and Why You Must Make the HOST Ask Several Weeks in a Row.
  2. Set any meetings that will generate supporting sign-up forms, inserts, web and bulletin info, and FAQs that will be needed.  Here’s an example of a HOST FAQ.  At this same time, you should set any meetings that will be needed to discuss changes in the order of your service (for example, if you’re going to collect the HOST sign-up forms in the offering basket, the offering will need to follow the message).
  3. Now is the time to step up your efforts to recruit a group of launch-phase coaches (if you haven’t already done this, there is still time).  One of the most important predictors of groups that begin with a churchwide campaign and then continue is the presence of a knowledgeable veteran walking alongside.  If you take the time right now to recruit some veterans to help the newbies, you’ll sustain a much higher percentage of the new groups you launch.  See also, Recruiting Additional Coaches for Church Campaigns.
  4. Calendar and plan a set of identical HOST orientations that will help your new hosts get off to a great start.  See also, Host Orientations that Work  and Add This HOST Orientation Idea to Your Bag of Tricks.
  5. Fine tune arrangements for all materials needed for your churchwide campaign.  You’ll want to begin distributing host packets and supplies (study guides, books, DVDs, invitations, etc.) no later than two weeks prior to the launch date.  This gives your hosts an easy way to invite friends, neighbors, co-workers, and family.  See also, FAQ: Who Typically Pays for Materials in a Churchwide Campaign?

Still looking for a churchwide campaign to do this fall? See also, Add “Pressure Points” to Your Churchwide Campaign Short List and 5 Cross-Cultural Campaigns that Ought to Be on Your Radar.

Mark Howell is the Pastor of Communities at Canyon Ridge Christian Church in Las Vegas and LifeWay’s Small Group Specialist. Mark founded, which offers consulting and coaching services that help churches across North America launch, build, and sustain healthy small group ministries. You can read more from Mark at and follow him on Twitter at @MarkCHowell.

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