A website isn’t the only way to build your church online. There’s also the ever important social media.
Whether you love it or hate, you can’t deny how popular it is, especially with millennials. If you want to reach existing church members and gain new members, social media is a powerful tool.
To make the most of it, you have to be active. Think of social media as a way to have conversations with anyone and everyone all at one time.
1. Interact During Peak Times
One of the benefits of using social media to build your church online is you can often interact in real-time. For best results, try posting during peak times to get the best interaction. Hubspot breaks down some optimal times, but includes an important remind – there isn’t always one set time, so see what times work best for your church. Posting during these times means you’ll also get more people sharing your content, which helps build followers.
2. Have A Solid Strategy
This is probably the most important tips of all. You need a strategy and you have to stick to it. Even if you just post once a day to Facebook, at least stick to that schedule and post around the same time each day. A few things to include in your strategy are:
- Have at least two people working together
- Create a posting schedule
- Determine which networks to use
- Include rules for things not to post
3. Use More Than One Channel
Using one social network might seem overwhelming, but even though 68% of adults use Facebook and 21% use Twitter, you widen your reach by using at least two different social channels. Plus, different content performs better on different networks, such as short verses on Twitter and community photos on Facebook. Talk to members of your church and community to see what their favorite networks are.
4. Use Social Media Management Tools
The biggest reason you might not want to build your church online using social media is because it is time-consuming. You’re not always going to be around during optimal posting times or thank someone for following you. The solution is to use social media management tools that allow you to schedule posts in advance, see all activity from multiple networks at a glance and interact on multiple networks from a single dashboard. Some are free, but others do have premium plans for additional features.
5. Implement Photos
Want to have more engagement on social media? Increase share rates and make sure your posts get noticed by adding in photos. Every post doesn’t need one but think about the type of content you notice first on social media – the content with images. Not only does it look more appealing to potential members, but it’s easier to remember. In fact, most people only remember 10% of what they hear after three days but remember 65% of what they see in an image.
6. Lighten Up
It’s tempting to only post serious things, but that gets old and it doesn’t show any personality. After all, the idea is to build your church online, not drive everyone away by showing that your church is stuffy and boring. It’s okay to mix in some lighter content, such as jokes, something funny that happened to church leaders or just a light-hearted inspiring message. Just check out Ken Davis does it to get inspired yourself.
7. Learn From “The Competition”
While you should never just copy “the competition”, look at what other churches are doing on social media. This is a great way to see what does and doesn’t work. You can also get ideas on what type of content works best on different networks just by seeing other churches’ posts.
8. Mix In Video
Video content is expected to make up 74% of Internet traffic in 2017. If your want to build your church online, add some video to your social media strategy. Short videos showing community events or excerpts from a recent sermon all work well. You can also mix in some family friendly funny videos just to give everyone a reason to laugh for the day.
Social media can be a highly effective way to build your church online and interact with your current members. While there is a time investment, it’s well worth the results.
Adding social media to your church marketing strategy? Contact us today to see how we can incorporate social media on your website.