In the midst of the their careers in the health club industry, George and Louise Eusterman saw how making a strategic change in their dues acquisition revolutionized their business: EFT payments. In seeing how a properly managed EFT (Electronic Funds Transfers) setup benefited both the business and its clientele, the Eustermans realized that a similar paradigm shift could positively impact Christian ministries, as well.
Greater financial stability
The first initial (and intended) benefit to the Eustermans’ health club business was the greater financial stability that resulted from the regular payments that made chasing after its members unnecessary. Not only did this primary benefit help the health club meet its monthly financial goals, but it also included these two fringe benefits: freeing up workers to do tasks other than contacting clients and processing paper checks and improving the business’s relationships with their clients. As you can imagine, these same kinds of benefits can impact Christian ministries, as well. People tire of hearing ministries “beg” for funding, yet ministries need stable, regular giving in order to succeed in their endeavor to impact the world for Christ. By adopting an EFT setup, both the ministry and its donor base can have their desires met.
Well being of members
A second hoped-for outcome from the health club’s shift to EFTs was to encourage the well-being of health club members. Instead of having one negative behavior (unpaid dues) aid in promoting another negative (lack of exercise), the recurring billing helped encourage continued regular exercise. In the past, the monthly decision gave an “easy out” to clients each month. Not only did that negatively impact the health club’s financial situation, but it also gave opportunities to clients struggling with behavior modification, in the way of regularly exercising. Their intentions were good, but with the easy opportunities to go back on their resolutions, many would allow the relationship with the health club—and their exercise ambitions—to lapse. Those who show intentions of giving faithfully to Christian ministries do so, not with a membership, but with a pledge. This pledge not only aids in the ministry’s ability to see others benefit spiritually, but it stretches the faith of the giver, as well. Neither of those spiritual benefits takes place without regular giving, and that giving can be more reliable through recurring EFTs.
A third result of recurring EFTs in the health club industry was somewhat unanticipated: growth. By establishing EFT payments with 80% of health club members, the Eustermans saw stability and growth pervade their entire enterprise, and that was in the 1980s. As we continue to progress through the twenty-first century and electronic media becomes increasingly common for all kinds of use, failure to adapt to this cultural norm can mean ostracizing an entire population of potential givers that are far more likely to give electronically than they are with paper checks or cash. In businesses and ministries alike, instead of deterring growth, not providing electronic payment or giving options may actually decrease income and overall stability.
While ultimately, God is the One who gives the increase, tools like recurring EFTs with Egiving Systems can mean greater financial stability, spiritual well-being, and growth for ministries. The Eustermans saw success with it over decades in the health club field, and now they’ve been seeing it impact ministries for over 10 years, as well.