Most church leaders don’t want to think of their church as a brand. It creates this negative view of treating the church as a business that’s only focused on boosting sales and overall revenue.
However, branding is about much more than that. Yes, major brands do want to boost sales, but they also want to build customer loyalty.
Churches want the same thing – loyal members who come back on a regular basis. Through branding, churches are able to keep current members and steadily build membership.
Build Trust With Potential Visitors
Sadly, many people have had bad experiences with churches. They’ve attended churches that were more focused on building bigger and better than faith. They’ve dealt with churches full of cliques and drama. This makes them think all churches are this way.
By thinking of your church as a brand, you’re able to employ strategies that help to build trust and humanize your brand. Instead of seeing your church as a place that doesn’t truly care about its members, potential visitors start to see your church as a friendly community focused on worshiping together.
Create A Strong Digital Presence
All major brands have one thing in common – a strong digital presence. If you don’t think your church needs one, you’re missing out on a major opportunity. The majority of your members and potential visitors spend a large part of their time online. From social media to general searches, they’re engaging with numerous brands online. Why not give them the chance to engage with your church?
Your digital presence doesn’t even have to be about marketing. In fact, church websites are more effective when the focus is placed on the visitor. Interact with members and potential visitors on popular social media channels. Start a podcast or do fun YouTube videos. You have numerous ways to create a digital presence and engage more people than ever before.
Clearly Define Your Mission & Values
An effective brand works hard to clearly define their mission and values. For churches, this is even more important. While every church has one core mission in common, every church is different. For instance, one church may focus more on helping members become their best self while another is focused on helping a specific cause.
Take the time to clearly define your church’s mission and the most important values. Not only will this help you to better engage current members and boost volunteering, but it gives you something to give to new visitors and to place on your website.
Establish A Distinct Personality
You might notice that different brands have distinct personalities. One may seem more serious while another is happy and carefree. What is your church’s personality? If you’ve never considered branding, this might be a hard question to answer.
However, when someone’s considering whether to join your church or not, they want to know what type of atmosphere your church provides. Is it friendly? Is it inspiring? Are members more serious or humorous?
Through branding, you showcase your church’s personality. From the tone of blog posts and updates on social media to the way pastors speak during sermons, every church has its own personality. Showcasing yours helps you stand out among other churches.
Create Persuasive Marketing
Okay, so branding is a marketing strategy. After all, the idea is to get more people to come to your church. However, you don’t have to create annoying ads or constantly pester people with marketing emails. Proper branding is less in your face and more of a gentle persuasion.
For instance, create a church website that lists all the important details about your church, such as the hours, location and amenities (such as child care). The only other details should be a calendar of events. The rest of your site should focus on helping visitors explore their faith and get inspiration when they’re down. Social media should be the same way.
If you have an email newsletter, focus it on inspirational messages and have a simple call-to-action at the end to come to a special event or the next service. Plus, the more you focus on your brand, the more people you’ll draw to your church naturally without any major marketing.
Start the first step towards creating a strong brand for your church by building an engaging church website to connect with visitors and members.