Why Does Your Church Need An Online Presence?
First thing’s first. Have you liked the Carey Association’s Facebook page? Like it and share our posts to your timeline and also to your church’s timeline!
Why does a church need to have a website? Why do they need to be on social media? Why do we need to be online at all? How do I make these things? Where do I even start?
Pastors and church leaders, do you ever find yourself asking these kinds of questions? Someone mentioned that you should make a website for your church but you have no idea where to even begin on it. Or someone said you should make a Facebook page for your church but you don’t do much on Facebook.
While a website may take some time to create, a Facebook page for your church is something that can be accomplished in a day. It can at least give you a starting place with an online presence. We will talk about websites next time and maybe get into other social media platforms at some point, but stay with me and let’s focus on Facebook for a minute.
With the development of technology and the way that younger generations are consuming it, it is an easy way to connect with them. I say younger generations because that is the majority of users, however, there are more and more “older” generations learning to use it as well. When I say older, don’t get me wrong, I just mean not under 30 years old.
Say you have an event coming up at your church and you want to let others know about it; where would you start? Well you would put it in your weekly bulletin, your newsletter, church calendar, put signs up around the church, perhaps on the announcements that run on the screens on Sundays. I’ve even gotten so desperate as to put signs on the inside of bathroom stalls so MAYBE, just maybe, people would see it. However, from experience in announcing events around the church, people will still come to you and say, “I never saw that! I didn’t know we were having such and such event!” Despite the frustration that they saw none of your hard work you will calmly tell them that it was in all those places and they may have even announced it in the service.
By creating an event on Facebook, you enter their day to day world. This is a place that many people go every day for hours on end it seems like. They scroll through their newsfeed just looking for something to catch their eye. When you invite that person to an event on Facebook, it will send them a notification. They can click on it and it will bring them to the page where you have all of the details about the event. When, where, how much, what’s going to happen? They may mark that they are interested or that they are going. They might also just not respond. However, as long as they do not say they are “not interested” they will still receive notifications about it. They will get a reminder about it as the event gets closer. You can post a message in the event as it gets closer and they will see that to remind them as well.
Okay so it’s just another place to promote events? Yes, you can promote events, but you can also use it as a tool to invite people to your church and promote JESUS! That is the ultimate goal, right? It’s not about us, it’s not about what we are doing, it is about Christ and His love for us. Facebook is a very powerful tool in helping us to accomplish that goal. You can share posts about what God is doing around the church. You can share pictures of people getting baptized and tag them in it. When you tag them, it shows up in their friend’s newsfeeds as well. It can spark questions of why did you do that? Why did you get dunked in a pool of water in front of all of those people? Which in turn, will open a door for that person to share what God is doing in their life.
You can post links to encouraging videos, songs you will be doing in your services, or even a link to your online sermon podcast (we will talk more about this in a future post). A post can be made about what the title of the sermon for Sunday will be or promote a sermon series.
You can post scripture verses that others can share to their newsfeed as well. Pro tip: people respond to posts that have a picture or video attached to them instead of just words. Since technology gives us all our information right here and now, many people don’t have a long attention span anymore. Many won’t stop to read a long paragraph, in fact, they will probably scroll right past it because it is too long. I admit, I have been guilty of doing just that. I’m sure we all have. Instead of posting a verse and then talking about it, find a picture that has the verse on it and then you can write about it in the post. They may not all read the post, but they will see the picture and might even share it. I have found a great site by Life Church that provides free scripture art pictures. They are beautifully done and absolutely free for you to use! (Click here to see)
Have I convinced you yet? I feel as if I have only scratched the surface of the possibilities a Facebook page for your church can bring. If you have questions or would like help setting one up, find that young tech savvy person in your church to help you, or email me at email@example.com. I would more than happy to help get you set up and show you around with the basics of a Facebook page for your church. Want to see a few examples of church Facebook pages? Click the links below (the first one is one I manage).
Director of Communication