by: Caroline Eaton
This article marks the first installment in our new social media education program.
In our other articles, we’ll cover the who, what, when, where, why and how of social media and how it relates to your church.
We’re especially excited to see how you use the tools we give you to increase the effectiveness of social media in your ministry. So, let’s get started!
What are the benefits of using social media for your ministry?
1. Easier communication with specific groups.
By using various forms of social media, in particular, Facebook groups, you can effectively communicate with certain groups or leadership teams within your church. For instance, by creating a Facebook group solely for your worship team, you can post about practices, upcoming events, new songs, etc. to everyone at once. You save time by not individually emailing, calling or texting each member of the team. This concept also applies to home groups, pastoral teams, Sunday school leaders and any other church team you may have.
2. Easier communication with your congregation.
You can also use social media to communicate with your entire congregation! If you do not have one already, I highly recommend that you create a “Facebook page” for your church and invite members to “like” the page. You can then post to the page and everyone who “liked” it will be able to see the post. Think of it like a bulletin for announcements. Do you need to move the time of your service? Post the update on your Facebook page so that your members are in the know. You can also use Twitter for similar purposes, but we will cover details about how to use specific platforms in a later article.
3. Keep people updated on the happenings of your ministry.
By using photo and video driven platforms like Instagram, Vimeo and Youtube, you can post photos and videos of church events that anyone can see. If you post a photo of a recent youth revival on Instagram, church members and even friends across the world will see it and share uplifting comments.
4. Connect with other ministries and leaders.
To continue on that point, using social media is a great way to stay in the know with what’s happening in other ministries around the world. Remember that friend from seminary who now pastors a church in Colorado? Now you can keep up with him, glean from his ministry and share with him what’s happening in your own church. You can also connect with people you’ve never had the opportunity to meet! Send a pastor you admire a nice comment of his recent photo and watch as the new relationship forms.
5. Free advertising.
As previously mentioned, people who have never been to your church will be able to see what you post on social media. Many people look up churches online before visiting these days, which means that your online presence is your first opportunity to draw new members.
I hope you have found this first article beneficial for your ministry. Please respond and let us know how you currently use social media to further your ministry. What tips and lessons would you like to learn? Are there any specific topics you want us to cover?
For a few concrete statistics (and a GREAT info graphic) about how churches are currently using social media, click here.