Church announcement videos are one of the most effective ways to communicate with your congregation and get them excited about upcoming events.
However, if videos aren’t done well, they end up being boring, awkward, and even downright cringey. Videos can also be time-consuming and costly to create.
But this doesn’t have to be the case! You can create stellar and creative church announcement videos with less time and fewer headaches if you properly plan and execute.
Here’s our guide to better church video announcements.
Estimated reading time: 10 minutes
Table of contents
- The Most Critical Factors for Videos
- Who Is Your Audience?
- What is the Purpose of Your Church Announcement Videos?
- What Are the Worst Mistakes in Church Announcement Videos?
- Tips to Prepare For Church Announcement Videos
- How to Save Time on Church Video Announcements
- Creating Stellar Church Announcement Videos
The Most Critical Factors for Videos
When it comes to creating church video announcements people will actually pay attention to, the most critical factors are length and capturing attention. Announcements should be kept to 90 seconds to 3 minutes – any longer, and people will start tuning out.
This is enough time for 1-4 announcements max for most churches.
People’s attention spans are shorter than ever, and online viewers are especially prone to skipping over long videos.
Because people are so easily distracted, videos should immediately capture people’s attention. Start each segment with a “hook” that pulls them in.
With this short window, it’s critical to keep things simple and get straight to the point.
As you create engaging and creative videos, remember that video announcements serve a specific purpose that’s not just entertainment – they need to effectively communicate vital information.
Who Is Your Audience?
Before you start creating, take a moment to think about your audience. Who will be watching these videos?
- Will the video be watched only in the room or also on the live stream?
- Will there be a speaker to introduce and follow up the video, or does it need to stand alone?
- How does it fit into the service flow? (This may affect tone and tempo.)
- Will the video be repurposed within the weekly email, website, or social media?
Knowing your audience and how they’ll be watching will influence the tone and language of your videos.
Another factor is whether the announcements are intended primarily for new visitors, specific demographics within your church membership, or everyone.
What is the Purpose of Your Church Announcement Videos?
Along with clarifying the audience, you need to be clear on your church video’s purpose – and ensure leadership is aligned with your approach.
People often underestimate how much time and effort goes into creating videos. And when someone at your church asks for a video announcement, they may have unspoken assumptions about how the information will be presented.
To avoid confusion, frustration, or wasted work, have a front-end conversation about video expectations and style.
- Do the announcements simply keep people up-to-date on upcoming events?
- Are the videos meant to teach church values and culture?
- Do you want to use video announcements to enhance the sermon or inspire people with creative elements?
- Will you include personal testimonies? And if so, are they stand-alone, or is the purpose to promote an event or ministry?
This is also the time to clarify how the audience and service flow aligns with the purpose. If your church announcement videos run before service and are mainly targeted to new visitors, they can be a little more repetitive.
If they’re meant to draw the entire congregation in, you may need to be more creative and stay big picture.
Some churches use an 80% rule: in-service video announcements should apply to 80% of the audience. Having a principle like this makes it easier to determine what should get air time.
But what about ministries and events that are vital to the life of the church but don’t hit that mark?
Other Ways to Use Video Announcements
As a church leader, it’s frustrating to hear your church members say, “I had no idea that was happening!”. Because we know that whether it’s a new believer’s Bible study or a middle school day camp, every ministry is vital to somebody.
The truth is, you can’t cram everything happening in your church into the in-service service announcement video. So you have to think about other ways to spread the word.
Here are some ideas we’ve seen in churches to share more information via video without making the in-service video announcement excessively long:
- Run standard announcements in a loop before or after service.
- Update video announcements on your website each week.
- Create shorter, more informal video announcements for social media.
- Send targeted video announcements to segmented audiences via email. For example, target parents for kids and youth announcements or volunteers for specific team gathering info.
What Are the Worst Mistakes in Church Announcement Videos?
We’re not trying to scare you away from making video announcements, but if you know some of the common pitfalls and mistakes, you’ll be able to avoid them.
Having superb on-screen talent (aka the person delivering the announcements) is crucial for a successful video.
Yes, that sounds like a lot of pressure for that individual, but it all comes down to picking the right person and then setting them up for success with proper preparation and coaching.
Some common mistakes related to the speaker include:
- Distracting clothing and accessories or messy appearance.
- Obvious reading from the teleprompter or notes.
- Too mechanical, dry, and robotic.
- Too dramatic, forced, or attempting humor that falls flat.
As you can see, it’s a balance.
It’s also unfair to expect someone to hit a home run their first time at-bat. Like anything else, delivering video announcements is a skill that requires practice and coaching.
The script is another critical element. The video will feel choppy, disjointed, and amateurish if it’s not well-written.
And if it’s too long, people will tune out. You want to avoid being overly repetitive in how you make announcements week after week.
Poor Production, Lighting, or Audio
One of the most common mistakes in video production is inadequate lighting or audio. And if it’s difficult to see or hear the announcements, that’s a fail on all levels.
People are used to seeing videos all day. It’s not just TV anymore; it’s social media, emails, YouTube, you name it.
While this has raised the standard for videos in some ways, you also don’t have to make your videos over-the-top slick and polished (which can be costly in time and resources).
As long as the videos are professional and of good quality, a relaxed atmosphere and delivery work fine for video announcements.
Again, keep in mind that people’s attention spans are short. The two major errors in video announcement are
- Too long: people get lost as the announcer drones on, including every tiny detail. Or announcing too many things.
- Too short: people get lost as not enough information was given. People don’t understand what’s happening, why it’s essential, or how to get more information.
CTA (Call to Action)
One time I sat in church watching an epic video for the summer student conference. It came to a strong ending with the dates, then the tagline for the conference theme.
There was a problem.
They missed the conference website URL for more information and the call to register and get their ticket.
It may sound basic, but it’s not uncommon to deliver an announcement and leave things hanging. Videos need to end with a next step, even it’s simply:
- Mark your calendar
- Bring your friends to this event
- Visit the website to get more information
Every CTA should be clear and easy to follow. And if there’s no action to be taken, maybe the announcement doesn’t belong in the video!
Tips to Prepare For Church Announcement Videos
After seeing some of the common mistakes, here are some tips on avoiding them and creating engaging church announcement videos, start to finish.
Calendar and Content
The more your church plans in advance, the easier it will be to work ahead and avoid last-minute shuffles in video announcement content.
It’s helpful to create a centralized marketing calendar, especially if you have a team of people helping with video production. This way, everyone is on the same page, and there are no surprises. Also, make sure key leaders have signed off on the video content for details, accuracy, and language.
Write the Script
Writing a video script can be tricky, even for skilled writers. What reads well on paper doesn’t always sound natural when spoken aloud.
That’s why it’s vital to continually read the script aloud as you’re creating it. Then, have others listen for flow, awkward phrasing, and clarity.
Look to other church’s announcements for inspiration, and pay attention to commercials and ads to see what works.
Make sure to hit the most critical points and that each item has a clear next step.
Finally, allow some wiggle room for your announcer because everyone is different. If a particular phrase is awkward for them to get out, allow some liberty to tweak the script so it flows more naturally.
Select the Right Announcer
This may seem like a no-brainer, but it’s crucial to select the right person for delivering announcements. They should be someone with good public speaking skills who is polished and professional. But they also need to be personable and relatable.
Set expectations upfront for what they should wear and how long filming will take. Also, let them know what you want to see regarding tone, inflection, hand motions, posture, etc.
Here is the most vital key: Give them time to prepare!
Don’t just throw the script at them the day of and expect polished results. They need time to practice, work on their delivery, and feel comfortable with the material.
There’s nothing more frustrating than watching someone fumble through a video because they’re unfamiliar with the material; it’s tedious and time-consuming for everyone.
Prepare Equipment and Environment
Quality production is critical. This includes lighting, sound, and video quality. If any of these are lacking, it will distract from the message. Be sure to check out our list of Best Video Tools for Churches.
You need to plan to film in the right environment without noise and distraction. Keep tabs on the weather and consider how the time of day will affect lighting, whether you’re indoors or outdoors.
Set up and test, test, test in advance to ensure equipment is good to go and the setting will work for a video shoot.
How to Save Time on Church Video Announcements
Great videos are challenging to make, without a doubt. There’s a measure of technical expertise required for equipment, filming, and editing.
And there’s also an art to creating engaging videos – a creative element that adds an undefinable “extra” quality.
You may not have a videographer on staff. Or you may not have the time and resources to produce a church video announcement every week.
One alternative option is that you can pay to outsource. Outsourcing might look like:
- Hiring a video company to produce your church announcement videos.
- Buying stock footage to use for B-roll (supplementary, secondary footage).
- Hiring someone to build up and organize your B-roll library.
You can also create your own announcements in-house. Here are a few tips to help reduce time in filming and editing:
- Create standard bumpers (intro, transition, outro) to use every week.
- Avoid timestamping or dating your recordings so you can reuse them.
- Record audio only to use as a voiceover with graphics or B-roll rather than filming brandnew video with the announcer each week.
Creating Stellar Church Announcement Videos
So, what makes a great church video announcement? With the right script, announcer, and quality production, you can hit the mark without breaking the bank when it comes to time and resources.
If you keep the tips outlined in this blog post in mind, you can create announcements that are both effective and engaging.
We’d love to hear about your experiences creating videos for your church—leave us a comment with your best tip below!