Churches using social media might seem as something that is weird but the truth is that more and more churches all around the world are embracing technology in order to get closer to a much younger congregation. Social media can be highly effective for churches but using this new communication channel tends to be tough. This is why the following social media tips for churches will surely help out.
Perform A Social Media Audit
The very first thing that you have to do is to understand what the current social media reality is for the church. If you want to reach people and have a good impact, you should know where you start. The fact that you have a profile set up and have been posting is not enough. Hootsuite highlights how to do just that here.
Build A Good Social Media Calendar And Schedule Ahead
In order to build a sustainable and consistent social media presence, which is necessary, you need to schedule posts whenever you can. This is not at all difficult to do thanks to the numerous social media scheduling tools available.
Remember that many just randomly schedule social media posts. Do not do this! What you have to do is plan ahead. Create a social media calendar and stick to it.
As a related tip: be sure that you take a look at your Insights so you see when it is the best possible time to post. As an example, most people scan their news feeds after waking up. It is thus a good idea to have something present there at that time so that they see it. Something that is easy to scan and remember, like a passage from a book can work really well.
Always Engage With The Audience
One of the worst things you could do on social media is not engaging or replying with the audience you have. This is especially important for churches. Engagement will be different from one channel to the next.
You will most likely want to use profiles like Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. For a church, the first option is almost always Facebook. Respond to comments and showcase the community that you have.
Use Images And Videos
It was already proven that posts with images and videos have a much higher engagement than simple text. This is very important. The internet as a whole is changing. People are in a hurry and want to quickly find the information they want. Videos and images capture the attention of the viewer.
There are always different options that are available for churches and there is a huge possibility that photographs and videos are already taken. You can film some of the things that happen or that the church is involved in right now.
Repost Content When Suitable
You cannot expect people to always be online and see what you post. At the same time, it is not at all a bad idea to post links and write about what happens in the church community. You can also link to the exact same content. Just make sure that you do not spam your visitors.
Strategically Use Hashtags
Hashtags are really useful on all social networks, especially those that rely on images, like Instagram. You can centralize conversations around your church by creating your very own hashtag. Also, you can use some of the hashtags that others use, preferably your community, in order to gain awareness.
Fill In All Profile Details
This is particularly important on social media networks that allow you to share a lot of things about yourself on your profile, like Facebook. We are talking about a church so address and contact details are absolutely necessary. Engagement is lowered if you do not add such details and you lose people without even knowing it.
Do Not Be Too Serious
When we look at most Christian social media posts, they have a very deep meaning and are way too profound or serious in tone of voice. We do understand that we are talking about a church but it is always a very good idea to introduce some lighter posts and to change tone of voice from time to time. Making people smile is always a good thing on social media. This is what makes people spread content for you.
Be As Concise As Possible
On Twitter you are practically forced to be concise. This is really good but the same thing should be the case with other networks. Most of your followers will scan the content you share for around 2 seconds. This is exactly how much time you have available to capture attention. If the post is really long and includes too much text, you cannot capture attention.
Obviously, you can also write longer posts from time to time but generally, it is a very good idea to be concise.
Learn From Your Competition
Most churches that use social media these days make one mistake without even realizing it: they do everything alone, without looking at the competition. Obviously, you do not compete with the other churches so just do not try to compete. Churches are not competition but you can learn so much from them. You can see what other churches post and analyze the posts that have a higher engagement. Test similar posts to see how they work in your case.
Learn What The Audience Loves About The Church
In every single church out there you will see that people attending are passionate about some specific topics. This can help you out a lot in determining what you should talk about on social media. Use the information you get from those that you trust in the community and start testing posts. When people are motivated, they share content with others. They are much easier to motivate when they already like what they see.
One of the main reasons why social media channels for churches are not posting content is that they tried to use the communication channel but results did not appear. What needs to be understood is that results do not appear overnight. It takes a lot of work and time. You need to have a truly realistic perspective and keep working. Results will come if you just stick to it and you keep learning.
Why Should People Follow The Church?
This is a question you need to always ask. There has to be a compelling reason for people to follow your church on social media. Choose content in a wise way so that it attracts people. Experiment and find what works in your case.
One of the most important things to remember about using social media for churches is that you have to listen to your community. They will tell you what they like and what they do not like. Analyze the responses you get and you can quickly figure out how to build a wonderful profile that will help you connect more with followers.