12 Essentials of Church Communications

The church is the hope of the world. As church leaders we have the responsibility of communicating the greatest message known to mankind; the only message capable of changing a person’s entire eternity.

The weight of that responsibility is both profound and incredible. It moves us to action, and demands that we communicate it well.

In the United States alone, we have 350,000 churches; each started by people with the desire to communicate the gospel message. Yet oftentimes, churches have a difficult time communicating this message because they don’t understand the basics of communication.

Think about it … Is your church clear on who they are and where they are going? Does your church use social media to nurture and grow relationships? Has your church spent unhurried time developing a brand that resonates with people in your church and community? Are you proud of your website and does it accurately communicate the uniqueness of your church? Have you evaluated and observed what guests experience on a Sunday morning? Do you want create more awareness of your church in local communities?

These things may not seem significant, but they are critical. In fact, they are essential.

We have researched and identified the 12 Essentials to Church Marketing and Communications and developed a resource that equips Church Communications leaders. And we did it for one reason; because eternity is at stake. We developed this important resource to help you reach more people with the gospel. We  wanted to give you a sneak peek at the 12 Essentials.

The 12 Essentials to Church Marketing and Communications

#1 – Eternal Perspective

When it comes to Church Communications, it’s critical to remember that you want to produce an excellent product not for excellence sake, but because eternity is at stake.  Lose that perspective, and you lose everything.

#2 – Vision Clarity

Vision clarity is about staying focused on the mission and vision of your church.  To reach clarity, you must know who you are as a church and where you are going.

#3 – Brand Standards

Brand Standards are the compilation of documents where you articulate the mission, values, strategy, and vision of the church.  They protect the treatment of everything from your logo and tagline, to fonts and color choice and even email signatures and phone messages.  Brand Standards are critical but often overlooked.

#4 – Communication Strategy

Your communication strategy involves understanding your audience and then identifying the best way of communicating who you are to that audience.  It helps you determine what, when and how you will communicate.

#5 – Project Systems

Andy Stanley says, “The systems down the hall trump the vision on the wall.” If you don’t have systems in place, standards and strategy mean absolutely nothing. The systems that you set in place allow the day-to-day operations to run smoothly.

#6 – Social Media

With over 845 million active users each day, Facebook reports an unbelievable 4 billion posts, likes, comments, and photo uploads every single day. Facebook and other social media sites understand the power of community. They understand that people want to be a part of something they feel connected to.  Learning to use social media to reach the lost and to extend the influence of the church isn’t just a good idea, it’s a must.

#7 – Web Essentials

We live in a technology and social media driven society. Today’s church visitors will most certainly check out your church on the Internet before they attend for the first time. It must reflect the experience they will have when they do attend.  It has to be more than just a website of information. It has to be an experience.

#8 – Guest Experience

There are few things first time guests expect when they visit your church. They expect to be greeted warmly; they expect to fill out a card with their contact information; and they expect someone from your church will follow up with them. Fail to meet any of these expectations, and they aren’t likely to return for a second visit.

#9 – Audience Connection

Ever been disconnected on the phone but not realize it until you have finished speaking?  Then you understand the importance of making sure you are connected to your audience.  To connect to your audience, you must understand who they are and how they take in information.

#10 – Creative Leadership

Creative people are not easy to lead and motivate. They are a breed of their own. Understanding how to lead creative people, and how to facilitate a creative meeting are critical. Moreover, learning to lead those in authority over you who lack creativity is equally important.

#11 – External Marketing

Churches and marketing have a rocky relationship. Historically, churches have not communicated effectively to their external audiences. Most churches make the same marketing mistakes: the message is not unique; the content is not inviting; and there’s no long-term strategy in place. If that description fits your church’s marketing, it’s time to make some changes.

#12 – Storytelling Principles

At the end of the day, stories move people.  Effective storytelling is always more effective than just another event announcement. Vigorously find and celebrate the stories of people within and outside your church.

The 12 Essentials help you master the basics of Church Communications. Mastering the basics of church communications helps you reach more people with the most important message in the world.

Simply put, it’s essential. 

Read more from Tim here.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Tim Peters

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COMMENTS

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Recent Comments
If someone wants entertainment they're going to the wrong place. Church is not a place for entertainment...or in my opinion a barrage of coffee and donuts. Why are churches today bringing the world INTO them? Then there's the thing with children...age appropriate??? These little guys can pick stuff up in service. Besides Jesus said Suffer little children, and forbid them not, to come unto me: for of such is the kingdom of heaven. Mt. 19:14.
 
— Laurie
 
I love the intentionality here as well as the challenge to look at the data. That's missing so many times. I would like to offer a contrarian's take. Church members and regular attenders have so many ways to get information: Announcements, bulletins, social channels, relationships, and email being among the options. But brand new people are likely going to check out the website and that's it. It might be wiser for churches with limited time and resources to focus their website almost exclusively to guests. This group of people isn't looking for a calendar of events but wants to know about regular programs. They probably aren't interested in watching all of the messages but instead may want to preview one of the services. For the times we need church members to go to websites (sign up for camp, join a group, etc), we're probably better off designing and promoting a specific page rather than cluttering up the homepage.
 
— Michael Lukaszewski (@mlukaszewski)
 
A great question! Unfortunately, the Church Unique Kit is no longer available in print form. We are working on revising it and updating it into an online experience, but that project is at least six months out. An alternative is to come to an upcoming certification class. There is one May 15-18 in Houston, and October 23-26 in Atlanta.
 
— VRcurator
 

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