- Social Media Authentic–not focused on technological “FLASH” or even “ACTIVITY” but on ACCESSIBILITY of the ministry team, leading church followers to further ENGAGEMENT in God’s Word and how it applies to our lives, and over communication of the events and activities of the church. My four favorite Social Media channels—Twitter, Facebook, Google+ Hangout & Instagram
- Focus like a laser on what you want to drive home to your followers for that week. Have a message of the week tied in with sermon.What do you want them to do? Where are you taking them? How can you help them? Have a weekly hash tag # driving home that message. Example of this—last series on “It is NOT complicated.” Have #ItisNOTcomplicated hashtag for the series but each week focus weekly message like #AdoptionByGod from Galatians 4. Having a Hashtag unifies all posts on social media channels. EVERYTHING you post via social media will include #HashTag theme. Driving home the message and prompting engagement.
- Provide pastoral response to questions posted via Twitter #askTVC with the sermon series #ABeautifulDesign about the message. Matt Chandler does a good job of this at the Village church in Texas. Here is a link to all of their sermon series in this #ABeautifulDesign series. Notice after the sermon, he will answer questions posted on Twitter using Hashtag #AskTVC regarding his sermon the prior Sunday on Tuesday.
- Expectation at Church would be whomever is preaching on Sunday would be available to answer questions on one specific date (i.e. every Tuesday) via Twitter and then be videotaped answering questions. Could provide a LIVE opportunity once a month on a Wednesday night for Senior Pastor or another pastor to answer the questions posted on Twitter LIVE for small groups to witness in the sanctuary.
- Use FREE Google+ Hangouts to begin to introduce your sermon (like “It is NOT complicated) or weekly MESSAGE (like “Adoption by God”) and help people dig DEEPER (interview church members who have adopted OR interview experts on book Galatians). Use Google+ Hangouts to engage your followers. FREE tool which allows you to have conversations LIVE online with others and have them recorded in YouTube. Have a panel (max on panel is 10 and they log in wherever they are at using their web camera) of “experts” on the topic and field questions via hashtag in Twitter AND on YouTube. Great use of Google Hangouts in ministry by Pastor Greg Surratt called “Ministry Hangouts.” Hangout could be once or twice a month. Use it as a tool for small groups.
- Kicking off series, provide a photo booth (like at the Valentine’s Banquet) where families, individuals can have their picture taken holding a small marker board with the hashtag of the sermon series. Encourage followers to take pictures of themselves engaging in the hashtag of the month and have scrolling pictures of church members living out the message before the service. Instagram has proved people are much more engaged by pictures and people are much more likely to engage if they can see a picture of THEMSELVES!
- Take advantage of using church members ORGANIC pictures alongside your #Hashtag. STRONGLY ENCOURAGE church members to take as many pictures and videos of themselves WITH the HASHTAG in their post. Each picture would show how they are actively living out and testifying about their faith capturing the spirit and message of the church. Sermon series then becomes interactive.
- Empower & deploy your church members to become Story Tellers / Brand Ambassadors for your church. Reward church members who use hashtag and make “HEROES” of those telling and living the story of the theme of the month. Provide church members easy to forward social media posts regarding theme of the month.
- Activity of the church via Social Media will be ALL about emphasizing the sermon series THEME. Rather than just posting random verses or posts without a connection, every post will have a purpose to FURTHER engage the readers. When our followers like or reply, CHURCH post then goes on their newsfeed for all of their followers to see.
- Exponentially increase the exposure and accessibility of your ministry by being available on Social Media. Have a running conversation with your church members and prospects. Using Twitter, you can quickly respond to questions and post your 140 character opinions widely to your members. One of the BEST things about Social Media is it allows people to pierce the veil of the hierarchy of an organization. It meets the needs of Millennials especially but really all generations who are looking for authenticity and personal connection.
- Recognize social media allows you to build TRUST and AUTHENTICITY with your church members.Key characteristics for gaining followers is to build a tribe of people who believe in your message, trust you, and value your knowledge. .
- Brand yourself as a “generous expert” in the #Hashtag message of the month.Share articles, ask questions, ENGAGE people so they see the church as people they can TRUST. When they trust you, they will want more from you. They become “addicted” to your advice and insights and will be willing to invest in your organization.
- How to measure success? Opportunity to use metrics to see how many people are further engaging with the Church and the message of the week rather than just views on Vimeo and attendees in the pews.
- Take advantage of the FREE resource Hootsuit.com and have the same message across all of your social media channels. It is a great way to sit down and type up your planned, quick messages for the week. You will want to set aside time to respond to those who ask questions and dialogue.
- Make heroes out of volunteers. Allow the volunteers to get the praise & applause. Keeps them motivated, especially coming from their leader! Use Social Media to highlight them.
SOCIAL MEDIA ARTICLES ABOUT USING THIS FOCUS
COST / TIME INVESTMENTS?
- Very little cost if any to implement this. Only cost will be the time and energy of staff and volunteers.