Archives For outreach

Undoubtedly if your organization has a social media presence, you are leaning on your fans and followers to help spread the word. That’s one of the core reasons you are utilizing social media in the first place, right? To leverage the social networks of your supporters in order to reach new people that your organization doesn’t have an existing relationship with yet.

So you probably are asking your community to share your posts. To retweet and thumb up Like’s for your status updates. To +1 interesting content in your feed.

But have you explained to them WHY you want them to do it? More importantly have you shown them how their simple actions can help them be a part of the work your organization is doing?

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Check out this simple direct mail piece attempts to do with their community. Do you see how they are framing the opportunity for each of the thousands of people in the social media community?

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On the back, the larger than life number is shared in a way that invites the person to be a part of the plan.

How are you framing the WHY opportunity for your supporter base? Are you inviting them into the larger story or are you just drilling them with neverending requests to pimp out their personal social network for something where only your organization benefits?

My friend Joe just hit me up with an interesting factoid and corresponding question.

Now the answer to the question really depends on the posture of your ministry, in my humble opinion. . .

But first, the factoid, and then the question:

Did you know if one spends $100 on small business, that local community gets $68 back?

That factoid makes a compelling argument to spend your money in the local mom and pop shops around town.

So, here’s the big question for our church and ministry leaders:

If one gives to the church $100, how much would go back to your local community? (Feel free to define “local community” as it applies to the church)

What a challenge to ministry leaders to think in this kind of ROI context!  Some of the tough questions that serve as a reality check immediately pop into my mind:

  • What type of impact are you having within the local community?
  • Are you actually engaged with more than just your regular attenders and members?
  • Have you reached out to your civic leaders?  Schools?  Community-wide events?
  • What percentage of your ministry budget is directed toward your building? Or your staff?  Now, how much is spent on local outreach?  Are you at the right balance?
  • While you might be proud of your missionary support activities, how are you doing with the mission field in your zip code?

What IF you could claim a noteworthy ROI for the church?  What would it do in terms of getting people notice your ministry and how you are going about loving your neighbors?

Did you know if one spends $100 on small business, that local community gets $68 back?

So, if one gives to the church $100, how much would go back to the church’s local community? (Feel free to define “local community” as it applies to the church)

Just wondering…

Most churches believe they have open doors that just scream “welcome!” and may actually see some success in getting 1st time visitors.

But then, over time, not many people actually return for another visit.  Where did they go?

Ministry leaders are often left wondering why people don’t come back to their worship services another time.   Rationalization often leads to assumptions that since a church gets visitors, they must have succeeded in creating a friendly, inviting environment for new comers.  And this sometimes leads to lack of ownership of this important detail of converting first time visitors into repeat visitors.

Of course, it is easy to think those first timers just got busy the next weekend.  Or they assume most visitors aren’t serious about faith, so it’s understandable that they wouldn’t check out a church two weeks in a row.  Or a host of other excuses ministries can come up with on behalf of the absent returnee.

Truth be told, 1st time visitors don’t come back for a real tangible reason — their decision is now based on the reality they just experienced in person.

The hard part isn’t getting someone to come your church when they don’t know much about it.  It is only after they’ve experienced your church community in person — when all your ministry efforts are really felt — for them to consider retuning a second time.

Rick Ezell, pastor of a church in SC, believes there are actually 5 critical reasons why 2nd time visitors are a myth in many churches.  He says:

  • Visitors make up their minds regarding your church in the first 10 minutes.
  • Most church members are not friendly.
  • Church guests are highly consumer-oriented.
  • The church is in the hospitality business but don’t realize it.
  • You only have one chance to make a good first impression.

So then, what can churches do in order to get more 1st time visitors to turn into 2nd time visitors?

Here are 12 practical tips for getting the ball rolling with your ministry to start thinking about this in a serious way: Continue Reading…

It’s Easter weekend!

…Kind of like the Superbowl of Christian faith.

Holy Week. Lent. Good Friday. . . Easter. This is ground zero.

Some ministries plan elaborate spectacles and turn the sanctuary into an open house environment this one time each year.

This is definitely the easiest weekend all church members can invite a friend from work, school, family or even those strangers you have regular relationships with such as the security guard, bus driver, mail carrier, etc.

Why not take advantage of Easter claiming to be the happiest day of the year for Americans? Everything is in your favor.

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Besides using the major US holiday as an easy conversation starter, do your people have easy ways to describe your church?  What style would you characterize the worship service to people who haven’t been to church in ages (or ever!)?  How can people describe the lead pastor or the sermon messages?  And are you aware of anything else people routinely have trouble with when bringing up church with friends or co-workers? It’s the little things that many people need help with — For example, the logistics of explaining service times, location, directions, etc can be daunting to bring up.

The question of the day is: Are you doing everything you can to make it easy enough for people to invite a friend?

Here’s a great mailer I received from Liquid Church which has always been consumed with being an outward-facing ministry:

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It was a great reminder to invite someone to church. And the message on the back reinforced the simple message I can use to convey when doing so — which is aimed at helping to set expectations in an easy 1-2-3 format.

But the best part of this postcard invite-a-friend mailer was in the simple detail:

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The card itself was perforated on one side with a pass-along mini-invitation card with all the basic information anyone would need to know about visiting Liquid.

This is a 5-star example of making it easy for church members to go out and invite a friend to church. Successful outreach follows the classic word of mouth marketing strategies — and this church marketing piece serves to provide tools to make it easier for people to share the message with others.


QUESTION: What does your ministry do to make it easier for members to invite others to church on Sunday?