How can you successfully reach the 25-35 year old demographic? This is a question that many churches ponder with excitement and nervousness. While this question doesn’t have a perfect answer, it does make one dig into the true pulse and health of the church. Since I am fresh out of this decade of my life and have attended quite a few churches in finding my church home, I thought I’d offer some perspective.
The first question we need to address is how do you get the 25-35 year olds into the door of your church? In my last blog post I spoke about how I found my current church home. Getting the 25-35 year olds who are not attending your church comes down to two things: community awareness and your website showing up on searches. Getting them in the door might actually prove easy once you have those two narrowed down. But keeping them is where I’d like to talk about today!
What will set your church apart from the one down the street for this demographic and keep them coming? Let’s dive in!
Communicating Through Authentic Relationships
Be authentically loving in Jesus. Build events around what they want to do and invite the community! These activities will likely range from family movie nights to couple dinners to local hiking. If you have someone within this demographic come into the church, ask them questions. Greeters can be trained in actively asking questions to all they greet, helping gain valuable insight into what people do in their free time or as hobbies. Comment cards, when announced as a way to communicate quickly, are an easy way for someone to jot down a quick answer as they listen passively to announcements. You can also consider asking them if they wouldn’t mind a text or call from the staff to build on your relationships.
Safe and Fun Childcare
At church events, offer childcare. Many adults in this age group have children and the lack of childcare is what is keeping them out of the events that could introduce them to your church community. Build relationships with the person, not just the parent, by engaging your volunteers in the youth and staff in childcare during an event targeted at this demographic. Utilizing tools like Checkr’s background checks and having your volunteers attend all staff trainings not only keep your kids ministry safe, but also helps keep everyone on the same page regarding safety procedures and church policies.
Marketing Matters Because People Matter
Show them you care about their busy lives. We are all busy but this age group is jumping into the busy scene at 25 and fully involved typically by 30. There are many life events not only happening in their lives but the lives around them in this decade. From first ‘real’ jobs to marriages to graduate school or career switching to welcoming children, it’s an incredibly busy time in an ever-so-busy world. All of these major life events happening without a moment to catch their breath can make it difficult to think of adding more things to this season. Acknowledge that! Presenting events, gatherings, and happenings as responsibilities will push this group away. This brings me to planning events.
Invite Your Community To Events
As you are talking through inviting more people to your church, consider when they may be available! Nights? Weekends? Early mornings? Holidays? Every Monday night for seven weeks may not work for the majority of this crowd. Recently, I had trouble attending a four-week session that I was really interested in because, even though it was great to have consistency, I have multiple children with evening events, and my husband and I need to split responsibility. It was simply too much. The point is that this is not likely the age group that can commit to a weekly meeting unless there are the above suggestions in place for them.
As you are talking through inviting more people to your church, consider when they may be available! Nights? Weekends? Early mornings? Holidays?
Encourage Your Students
Be intentional with your student ministry now! hey will see you offering responsibility to them via caring for the youngest children in the church, operating on the security team, or joining in a ministry team that will demonstrate to them that even at the ages of 13-17, they are valued and cherished by their church family. eveloping mentoring roles with monitoring and guidance will build a healthy youth and can grow numbers in your targeted demographic in the long run for God’s Kingdom!
Pray for them, present and absent. Cover them in the love and truth of God’s way and surround them with blessings. Remember: God moves mountains!