Archives For Facebook

Last time, I shared a video of the digital nativity story.

It has garnered a lot of press around the world because of its timely and smart execution.

Kudos to the Portual-based team that produced it.

Now, others are jumping on the bandwagon after all the buzz that’s been going around (that’s the power of social media, right?).

I present to you this time . . . A Facebook Christmas story. . .

While there are critics who’s knee-jerk reactions will be to shout out how shallow and trendy these versions are — I wonder if you really quizzed people, especially younger ones, about the actual storyline — would they be able to tell the story better before they saw these videos or afterwards?

I would be willing to bet that since this video is so contextualized to the Facebook generation, a good portion of the group would be able to reconstruct the basics of the storyline in much better fashion than through the accumulated exposure to all the Christmas plays at church over the year as they were growing up.

Take a look for yourself at this video:

QUESTION: Does this video tell the story well enough?

Well, the other posts in this series touched upon how your ministry should view the social web as an extension of your social community and also seeing that social media is not just a passing fad at this point.

Today, I’ll share three factors of the social web that makes it compelling to use for church communications, especially for outreach into the communities around you.

At the foundation of today’s discussion is basically whether you want to remain nameless without any familiarity or trust. Do you want to be some anonymous entity stuck in a corner of your community or do you want to be a dynamic community participant that befriends people so you can invite them into relationships — with you and / or your ministry?

Here we go:

1) Better visibility – Managing your online presence across the social web gives you a position of infinitely better visibility to those that are in your community.  These days, the Googlopoly has invaded our life, not just our computers.  People don’t let their fingers to the walking anymore, they  travel the world of mouth.   In fact, with any serious effort, you’ll personally gain a lot more “friends” that can now know you exist than ever before.

2) Increased familiarity – This benefit does not require exteme lifestreaming, but it can be found from intentional utilization of the social media networks out there. If you are wiling to take on some simple proactive strategies, the social web allows you to converse with a much wider range of people about a much diverse range of topics than you probably would in your normal offline routine around town.  As people begin to regularly have a view into your daily activities (regular as well as those seat of the pants last minute activities), thoughts /reactions to various happenings around town, and your overall posture regarding both –  things that excite you and things that really really really matter to you, your local online social network becomes increasingly familiar with you, your personality / humor as well as your general willingness to engage.

3) Trust – This can only be achieved over time with authentic exchanges pointing the way to a God-honoring relationship built on trust. If you are consistent, outward facing, and responsive to people’s questions, needs, and just plain ol’ calls for social engagement, it is a start to quickly establishing trust with other individuals in your social networks. This last factor category cannot be overstated enough in terms of effects.

Visibility, Familiarity, and Trust.
These are the ingredients of any evangelistic outreach efforts whether you are online or offline.

Do you see how utilizing the social web successfully is not that different?  You really should leave a comment below.

Recently, I’ve been getting into more discussions with people regarding the question – should churches be using social media? If so, why and how?

There are plenty of reasons why we should look at the social web and see ways that the church should be evaluating and embracing it as just another extension of the offline social web that is the basis for our church communities.  I posted a video here of a recent talk that walked through the super high level basics of why the church should be social media positive.

Further in the conversation, the question arises whether social media is here to stay or just another fad.  I ask, was faxing or texting a fad?  Because they both were viewed the same way at the very beginning, but both in their own contexts are heavily relied upon for communicating these days.

Social media seems to be everywhere. There’s an important distinction here. Talking about social media might be a fad. But social media itself as a communications medium or approach, is probably something different. . .

Here’s a video from the Socialnomics author Erik Qualman that has made the rounds (based off an original version of socialnomics that went viral a long time ago in internet time) that presents that case regarding social media and diagnosing it as a fad. . .

AFTER WATCHING THE VIDEO ABOVE, WHAT DO YOU THINK?  ANYTHING SURPRISE YOU? Please leave a comment here to encourage or challenge others about churches embracing the social web!

It is amazing how divisive the topic of using social media in the church setting can be these days.

It’s being treated like a completely wild animal on the loose by some.  Some pastors’ take is to ban all social media and prohibit church staff and lay leaders from using Facebook and other social media — people in this camp position it as Satan’s work.

But what happens when social media becomes more than a fad?  But a new mode of communication like the telephone, or fax, or email, or . . .is it proper to ban it altogether vs. find some other creative approaches to address the concerns at hand?

I’m guessing the fundamental position on social media in the church is largely determined by how one perceives how and where the social web fits into the picture today and in the future.

Here’s one take that makes the bare bones basic appeal for the church to use social media.   On one hand, I’m surprised that such arguments have to be articulated out loud.  On the other hand, I guess the web 2.0 world has evolved so fast relative to other emergent technological innovations in communication that it can’t be addressed enough.

Check out this short video segment of a presentation on social media any why the church should embrace it. . . Continue Reading…