QR Codes are a lot like Duke basketball. . . Either you love ‘em or hate ‘em, there’s nothing in between.
And if you consider QR Codes in the church — that only ups the level of passion for either side too.
There are a bunch of ways churches can use QR codes in their church communictions.
But here’s one great example of a church using QR codes for good that I spotted recently. This ministry posts one at the entrances so that people coming in can quickly scan and access the bulletin on their smartphone by the time they sit down. That’s practical, helpful and eco-friendly.
Do you think church communications teams are wasting their time with QR codes?
It feels like we just celebrated the New Year, and Easter is here already. Of course it is actually a bit early this year on March 31. But that only means we have to be on our toes to be strategic for Easter to be a way to welcome newcomers, casual attendees and friends / family that might be visiting from our of town.
One of the easiest tactics almost any church can utilize to spread the word about Easter Sunday services is Facebook advertising.
Not only is it affordable since you actually set the bid and budget caps for your campaign — so your expenses won’t go wild and out of control.
But Facebook advertising is extremely effective in reaching friends of those that are attending your church already. This is where leveraging social networks for church outreach messaging is perfect.
FACEBOOK ADVERTISING ALLOWS YOU TO TARGET VERY SPECIFIC DEMOGRAPHIC GROUPS
Here is an example of an ad I set-up today for Liquid Church’s Easter Services. You’ll see that I’ve been able to set-up 3 demographic factors — People who live in the US, live in NJ in particular and who are 18 years or older.
The interesting part is that you have even more control of who sees your ad — I added two additional parameters to this Facebook ad campaign:
- People who are NOT already connected to Liquid Church’s Facebook page. I am setting up separate messaging (ad graphics, headline, ad copy and click through URL landing page) for people who are already fans of our Facebook page. This ad is for people who have not LIKEd our Facebook page already.
- Only people who have friends that are connected to Liquid Church’s Facebook page. So, here I’m not just targeting anyone in NJ over 18 that’s not part of our FB page community. This parameter adds the social element. Our ad will show up ONLY if they have a friend that has already LIKEd our church Facebook page.
By adding these two filters, I can leverage the fact that anyone seeing this ad has a chance of already hearing about Liquid Church from their friend (or their friend’s FB timeline feed) or at least has someone they know that knows about Liquid Church (because they’ve already liked our page).
In a way, this ad is helping to seed the “invite a friend” behavior we hope our own community members are going to carry out over the next week or so.
FACEBOOK ADS ALLOW YOU TO TALK DIFFERENTLY TO YOUR OWN COMMUNITY MEMBERS
If you’re following along, you’ll now understand that your ads for your current attendees (we can assume these are basically the people who “LIKE” your Facebook page) can be a bit different.
In fact, here is an ad set-up that is intended for people who already know about Liquid Church and is a part of our Facebook community today:
Instead of a generic “come to Easter services” type messaging, we have the ability to help equip our own people to invite their friends and family. This can be done by sending click throughs to a page on your website that has downloadable content to share with their friends. What would you put there? Things like:
- Video invitation from pastor with social sharing or forward to a friend email link
- Facebook cover image people can use for the week
- 1-step tweet links like this one: http://bit.ly/clicktotweetabouteaster2013 (TRY IT!)
- Social sharing friendly videos about Easter like this one called social media Easter
Are you using Facebook Advertising for Easter promotion? What questions do you have about using Facebook Ads for church?
Today’s post is from Nils Smith, who is the WebPastor at Community Bible Church in San Antonio, TX. As WebPastor he oversees the entire web presence of CBC including CommunityBible.com, mobile app, Online Church, and all future developments online. Nils is also the author of The Social Media Guide for Ministry. Connect with him here: Blog | Twitter | Book // I’ve asked him to boil down what he does on Facebook for CBC Online to some key tips that any church on Facebook could really benefit from.
5 Tips for Churches on Facebook
A little more than 2 years ago we started the Online Church Facebook page (http://facebook.com/cbconline) with little direction or strategy. Despite our lack of a plan, and through a constant state of experimentation the page has grown to more than 250,000 Likes. In the process we have made many mistakes, but have also found some keys to success in using Facebook. Here are a few tips that I believe will help your church maximize Facebook:
- Be Consistent – the biggest mistake that churches make is creating a page and rarely posting to it. Set a schedule and stick to it, I recommend posting at least once a day.
- Inspire your Audience – inspiring your congregation doesn’t have to just happen in your church building. It can happen online as well!
- Ask Questions – remember that Social Media is social and asking questions is the best way to start a conversation.
- Tell Stories – there’s not much more powerful than sharing a testimony of how God has moved in the life of someone in your congregation or sharing a highlight from a recent event in your church.
- Share Information – while this is last on the list it is still important to let your congregation know what’s going on. This is often the only content that churches post and causes their pages to be irrelevant and ignored, nonetheless it is very important
Which of these 5 ways of engaging your community on Facebook is missing from your current routine?
So many times the core offering is great, but it falls on dead ears. Why?
Have you ever considered it was because the user experience was lacking?
What if you reinvented the *experience* you are delivering along with your core offering? Most likely, you haven’t paid as much attention to the “post-sale” experience as you do to the crafting of the core offering to your audience targets.
Check out these fast food reinventions of the user experience:
When seeing these new environments, i was impressed. They woke up and realized they needed to consider the people they depend upon — their customers.
If McDonald’s and KFC can pay attention to the experience they offer and really consider how the customer engages with their brand, can’t you too?
What can you do to really ramp up the experience interacting with your organization?
Tomorrow I have the privilege of meeting up with some of the good folks over at www.thehighcalling.org in a Google+ Hangout.
If you are around, please consider joining the conversation as we talk about faith, tech and our work. Or follow the conversation with #THCLive
G+ hangout: www.thehighcalling.org/onair at 3pm EST on February 27
Do you use your cell phone in church?
Is it encouraged or shunned in your church?
Westminster Presbyterian Church is part of the Presbytery of San Fernando in Burbank, CA. Prior to the service they actually showed this video of how they handle cell phones in church.
This is such a great topic because you’re probably firmly rooted one side or the other. . .
Either cell phones are a menace, to the preacher, to the people around you, and a distraction from the activity of worship itself OR it can be an amazing tool that augments the worship experience as well as empowering the congregation to be evangelistic *during* the actual service itself.
What is interesting is that ministries like YouVersion have even explicitly built services to encourage smart phone usage in church.