FREE Social Media Web Event

Does social media ever feel like a waste of time?

Like you’re spinning your wheels?

Not getting traction? No clicks, likes, fans, or opens?

You might be making some crucial mistakes you’re not even aware of. Mistakes that could be costing you customers, web traffic, clicks, and engagement. Good news: You can fix your mistakes. Better news: It’ll take you less than an hour to do so.

Join the web event “The 7 Social Media Mistakes You’re Making and How to Fix Them” hosted by Think Digital Academy founder, Justin Wise. I’ve learned so much from Justin the past couple years and I have no doubt he is going to do a slam dunk job with this web event.

On this web event, you’ll learn:

1. Where 80% of your social media results (more purchases, traffic, members, etc.) will come from.

2. What an editorial calendar is and why virtually nobody uses one.

3. Why “engaging the conversation” is the worse social media strategy on the planet.

4. Why online influence is more important than ever.

5. How to instantly improve your search engine rankings with social media.

PLUS, you’ll get exclusive access to a 14-minute interview with New York Times bestseller and social media powerhouse, Gary Vaynerchuk. Gary’s worked with some of the top brands in the world and shares some of the biggest social media mistakes he sees.

Registration is free. Anyone can sign-up.
Get more details and join this exclusive web event by clicking here.

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Multi-Sites and their Websites.

The multisite church revolution is not slowing down. More and more churches nationwide are choosing to launch new
campuses. Outreach Magazine stated that 75 of the 100 Largest Churches in America are multisite. Wow. I love when I find churches that have put their website as a priority in providing an easy user experience. Churches that use their website to provide value and accomplish missional goals is easier said than done. I have a couple of examples of some multisite churches that have provided inspiration for the best online solution for their church.

#1. Biltmore Baptist Church – Arden, NC

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Why I like it — Biltmore Baptist Church utilizes the “splash page” model. They ask users to pick a “default location” on their first visit. As you hover over each location, it displays when services are held, what the physical location is, and a link to Google maps. Everything you need before you even have to click a button. They also display a countdown that shows when the next service will go live. Easy. Simple.  Extremely helpful.

#2. Elevation Church – Charlotte. NC

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Why I like it — Elevation Church displays their various campus locations right there in the middle of the page. The Google Maps location finder is helpful, especially for first time visitors! I have learned that first time guests make up their minds about your church within the first 7 minutes from the parking lot to decide whether or not they are going to come back. The same principle applies to websites…except with websites that time slashes to seconds. 7- 30 seconds to capture the attention of first-time visitors to your website. If they can’t find the information they need, they’ll look elsewhere.

Church Communications – What is that??

Anything people read, touch, or click is considered communications. Maybe there is something to add to that, but I haven’t really found that yet. When it comes to church communications I think this is crucial because:

  • Read would include any written messages communicated from or about the church…be it in print or electronic form.
  • Touch would include a weekly bulletin, newsletter, brochures, mass mailings/postcards, or anything else that represents the church or has the church logo on it…in print form.
  • Click would relate to any form of web or email based technology, as well as new social media tools like Twitter, Facebook, etc.

The role of church communications is changing…it’s no longer about a church secretary typing announcements into a pre-printed bulletin shell. Church communications now involves a lot of planning, strategy and people who are focused on directing the different communications channels of a church. In 2 words, hard work. There are some churches that have started to see the need and importance of having a full time staff member as a communications director. The director of communications is responsible for managing and directing a church’s internal and external communications. They work to create communication strategies and (depending on their role or level of authority) serve as the key spokesperson and media contact for the organization. The director of communications typically reports to an executive pastor and/or lead pastor. They handle all messaging in the church outside of the Sunday morning messages and work to build teams to support all facets of church communications (print, media, web, etc.).  They are passionate about the church’s vision and care about how it translates to people inside and outside of the church. They defend it. They design it. They care about it.

The local church is the hope of the world. I believe it has the greatest message that’s out there, the message of the Gospel. And with that, the greatest message deserves the greatest marketing, creativity, and storytelling. If there is one thing I am learning from school is that marketers spend millions of dollars every single year to tell us that our lives would be better or enhanced with the products, services, or ideas they are selling. I know that we are not about selling salvation as a product. The goal of the church is not to try and woo people to our ‘services’ (haha) or trying to convince them to convert or whatever….we are about seeing the trajectory of people’s lives changed. Seeing hearts surrendered to Jesus. Being a young person, I have the privilege and curse of being part of the generation that has made it harder and harder to communicate with. The cool thing is…with that comes the challenge of communicating the unchanging, timeless message of the Gospel in way that is relevant and compelling to the culture of its time.

Watch this video:

That commercial was for a WEB BROWSER. Google Chrome. What? Wow. Why didn’t they focus on the features and explain why Google Chrome is better than the rest or the best for you to use? Because Google understands the power of storytelling. They focused us on the story of Sophie and her Dad. They wanted us to watch it, get attached, say a few “aww” and “how sweet!” and emotionally connect with it. Less product. More story. Well, it worked for me.

What message are the experiences people have with your church communicating?

What does your marketing say about you and your church?

Is there a disconnect between what you say and what people experience?

What if Starbucks marketed like churches do? Watch this video:

Paint the Town..err..Web!!

Post originally on Church Marketing Sucks

There are endless ways you can promote your church online and we’ll just list a few ideas to get you started. Remember that the idea is to spread the word about your church, not relentlessly spam people. Keep it relevant and personal.

  • Facebook – It’s the largest social network ever. If you want to connect with people, they’re probably on Facebook. There are a lot of ways to promote your church on Facebook, from liking your church’s page to adding comments on their posts. To get more involved you can share their content with your friends, post your own links, photos or videos, invite your friends to church events and more. The activity of your friends is what gets noticed on Facebook, so talking up your church is a good way to casually introduce your friends to your church.
  • Local Listings – Make sure your church is listed accurately in local sites like Yelp, Foursquare and more. Check in, post a comment, add a rating or review. Whatever the particular service lets you do, do it so your church has some activity and credibility.
  • Create Pages – Head over to some of the content creation sites like Pinterest, Squidoo, Storify or Wikipedia and create pages for your church. Maybe you pin your church’s sermon graphics or you create a Squidoo page about an upcoming event. It might be harder to meet Wikipedia’s guidelines, but some historic churches might fit (remember that Wikipedia is about unbiased facts, not marketing—follow the rules or your page will get deleted).
  • Create Groups – Create groups for your church on various social networks like LinkedIn, Flickr, YouTube, etc. It’s a good way to pull people from your church together and that can be stickier for new people. Sometimes it works best to have a specific topic in mind, like a jobs/networking group for LinkedIn.
  • Conversations – There are a lot of local groups, forums and sites online where you can join some local conversations. This is where you need to be personal and relevant. Form relationships and talk about your church when it’s natural. Don’t just blow through local forums posting random invites. That’s spam and will do a disservice to your church.
  • Links – It’s as simple as linking to your church. Google has turned links into gold by pairing them to search results. So link to your church from your site. Add links in your blog posts whenever you can and help boost your church in the search results.
  • Email Signature – It’s kind of old school, but your email signature is another place where you can promote your church online. It might be a little odd to constantly promote your church there, so maybe reserve it for special events or tack on a holiday invite when you’re emailing local friends.