#Social - Getting Started with a Church or School Social Media Program

Jordan Klebig (San Jose, California USA)
Alexis Schneider (San Jose, California USA)

Archived discussion

About the presenters

Jordan Klebig, a marketing communications professional by day, and a trivia-loving, San Jose-obsessed blogger by night, has for the past 6 years managed content, public relations, and social media initiatives for companies ranging from quote-to-cash software to cognitive automaton. Jordan enjoys participating in band at Apostles Lutheran Church in San Jose, attempting and failing to cook, and mothering a daughter and four exotic GloFish.
Alexis Schneider is a high school administrator, but she promises her job isn’t as boring as it sounds. When she’s not training teachers, she’s checking out the church Facebook stats and strategizing how to expand our social media outreach… or eating way too much dessert. She, her husband, and their neurotic dog Gracie enjoy hiking, running, and biking through the beautiful San Jose foothills.

Your relaxed presenters. . .

The Dog Ate It. . .

We tried to kick off our social media focus the right way. We formed a team. We opened in prayer. We named the team after a delicious dessert: SMOR (Social Media OutReach). We came up with a mission statement and purpose for our first campaign. In the flurry of creativity we went old school; our pens could barely keep up with the conversation as we jotted down notes on the backs of our church bulletins. Alexis took the notes home so she could compile them in the team's shared Google doc, but before she got that far...disaster. The worst excuse for forgetting your homework became the team's reality: the dog ate it. While the dog spent the next 24 hours pooping out church notes and a gift certificate for sushi, the team had the annoying task of opportunity to reflect on their mission and hone their goals. Which means that we are doubly prepared to share our experiences with you, for better or worse. Welcome to #SocialChurch.

Getting Set Up

Before you create an account and start posting, you'll want to spend some time developing a strategy (and then spend some time doing it again after the dog eats it). This should include:

  1. Team Formation - As a team, do you have members who possess (or are at least willing to learn) the skills you'll need?
    • Spare time
    • Social media experience (if you aren't on social media yourself, you won't know the expectations of the medium)
    • Graphic design
    • Writing
    • Photography (and possibly Photoshop)
    • Videography (and possibly editing)
  2. Mission Statement - Define the purpose of your social media presence. Sure, social media can be a fun way to expend creative energy, but what impact are you hoping to make?
    • Our Mission: Educate members about what's happening in the church, help people in the San Jose area find a church home, engage people in the church and outside community with the mission of the church.
    • And here's the mission of our church: Under the blessing of God, we strive to. . .
      • Know the grace of God in Jesus Christ,
      • Grow in faith, love, and service, and
      • Go with the Gospel into our community and the world
  3. Decision Time - Pick your social media network(s). Keep in mind that you don't need the church to have a social media presence on EVERY network. You can always expand later as needed, but for now choose the one that fits your needs. For Apostles, that's been Facebook.
    • What networks have the capabilities you'll need to achieve your mission?
    • What networks are your church members using?
    • What networks is your community using? (Think about demographics that influence social media use, such as age, economics, etc.)
      • For instance, Pew Research published in 2015 that 71% of teens are on Facebook. We thought we'd need to use Instagram or Snapchat to reach our younger audience, but facts are our friends, so we were able to limit our network to just Facebook for now.
  4. Drill Down - Once you've got a mission and a network, it's time to talk specifics. For us, that meant coming up with our campaigns (which are often driven by the season, sermon series, and/or event) and the categories of posts we wanted to make sure we hit. For instance, we have one group at the church that's great at generating content, but we need to make sure that the social media account for the church doesn't just become a photo album of that group's events; we want to make sure that our mission and campaign drive the content, not the other way around.
  5. Create a Schedule - We'll talk about this again in the section on pitfalls to avoid, but you want to make sure to hit the Goldilocks point with your posts: not too often that you annoy your audience, not so infrequent that they forget you exist or you drop off their feed. In general, we try to keep our posts between 1 and 3 per week. Plus, we don't know about you, but life gets busy, and if we don't set deadlines for ourselves, we tend to let the church's social media account languish while we try to keep up with daughters, dogs, and dinner.
  6. The Boring Part - Assign jobs, figure out your communication plan (who delivers content when, etc.), and deal with administrative details like whether you'll have any money from the church budget to devote to this project (more about this in the Paid Promotion section).
  7. The Fun Part - Start posting! Take pictures, talk to church members about what they're involved in, get creative! Don't feel like your content has to be perfect (though PLEASE proofread). A good portion of what we do for the church's social media page is from our phones, and though we have a video studio at the church, we've also made videos on the fly while we stood around the church playground chatting after church... and from the comfort of our couches wearing PJs.

A few handy, helpful, (and did we mention free?) tools

  1. Canva: Create infographics and images easily, based on correct social media sizing parameters.
  2. Fotor: We change our Facebook banner to match our monthly sermon series. Fotor lets you easily create social media-specific banners and graphics.
  3. Google Images: Careful here, and only use images sanctioned for free reuse. Google an image you'd like (say, "waterfall,"), click "Search tools," then "Usage rights," and click "Labeled for reuse." You'll still get plenty of images that are free, legal, and beautiful.
  4. iMovie: If you have an iPhone, you can very easily capture videos to share on your church social media page. Sermon teasers, short synopses of events, your praise band's music--the world is really your oyster here.
  5. Hootsuite: Got an hour after church on a Sunday? You can schedule your social media posts for the entire week, month, whatever cadence you want, and they'll fire off without your having to think about it. If you're busy but still want to have a successful church social media presence, tools like Hootsuite are invaluable.

Tips (AKA Common Sense)

  • Let congregants know photos will be used on Social Media when you take their pictures.
  • Obey copyright law. This includes images, of course, but also music, even that which might be playing in the background of your videos. See "A Word about Copyright" in the 2016 spring GOWM conference.
  • Keep up with changes to image size & shapes before posting (e.g. Facebook cover photos sometimes had portions covered).
  • Learn from others! There's a ton posted online about what time is best to post, how many words your posts should include, etc. We've also changed our approach based on free webinars. The internet is full of great ideas!
  • Learn from experience! You're a smart person (After all, you've read this far.). Take a look at the analytics for your page and start analyzing what works and what doesn't work for your church. (For instance, at Apostles if a post mentions a children's program, it doesn't do as well, so we know we need to coordinate with the school to post information about the children's ministry on their page OR get parents to like the church page in addition to the school page.)

#Beware!: Stay away from these 10 church social media pitfalls

  1. Not gating posts
  2. In your settings, make sure that you pick the option to approve posts before they go on your wall; it prevents just anybody from posting on your church social media page. We don't even want to get INTO what might end up there otherwise. . . .
  3. Not setting goals
  4. Haphazardly posting and hoping it "does something" will likely get you nowhere. Come up with creative campaigns to gain followers in your church, construct a posting schedule, and set at least one goal to shoot for (increase followers by x%, increase post engagement by x%, influence at least 1 person to come visit the church, etc.)
  5. Over-posting
  6. Beware of becoming white noise to your audience. Be intentional about your posts, and try to stay around 1-2 a day maximum for starters.
  7. UNDER-posting
  8. If it's all crickets on your social media, it makes no impact, and you won't hit whichever goals you set (see pitfall 9!). Determine what cadence works best for you-- be it 1-2 a week, or 1-2 a day.
  9. Mistaking the church profile as your own
  10. We've seen this happen, and it makes things weird. You think YOU are commenting on or liking a post as yourself (which is GREAT for inspiring engagement), but you're actually on the church handle. On Facebook, you can toggle between your church profile and your own when you post--pay close attention!
  11. Not including images and videos
  12. If content is king, visuals are queen. You can easily create images to accompany your posts in free online tools such as Canva or Fotor. Got Photoshop skills? Use 'em! Got an iPhone? Apps like iMovie and Garageband are free. Record your pastor giving a "teaser" for his upcoming sermon and pop it on your page.
  13. Ignoring paid promotion as a valuable tool for outreach
  14. Even $5 can go a long way in reaching out to the unchurched — or unaware — around you. We ran a one day, $5 campaign for our Live Nativity, and it generated 400 additional views, 17 photo clicks, 25 post likes, 2 comments, and 7 shares from people that hadn't been acquainted with our church before. I reiterate: this cost only five dollars.
  15. Neglecting to keep your church in the know
  16. If your church has no idea about social media efforts, they'll be less likely to interact with your posts or back your efforts. Let the congregation know, let the pastor know, add social media on your Welcome Worshipper cards or guestbooks as a reason for visit, and let the elders know early and often about your social media successes.
  17. Forgetting everything your 9th grade English teacher taught you
  18. Improper grammar is the scourge of social media. For churches, it could potentially give people a very silly but very visible reason to criticize. Make sure you watch your tenses, punctuation, and spelling. (It's Nebuchadnezzar, FYI).
  19. Tossing your church bulletin
  20. Having trouble generating ideas for your social media posts? Your bulletin is your best friend. We keep ours after services and use it to put together posts on upcoming church activities, prayer requests, etc. Not a big bulletin church? Grill your pastor or someone in the church office once a week for upcoming events, sermon themes, passages, hymn verses that might come up in the next week, etc., as fodder for your posts. Guaranteed, you can come up with at least 5 things to post.

A (Very) Quick Guide to Paid Promotion on Facebook

I'm going to let you in on an easy way to make your offering matter in a completely different way. For our Easter services, we wanted to utilize our newly formed social media team to encourage more visitors to join our services. With no set budget, I decided to take my monthly offering and put it towards paid promotion of our Easter post. It looked like this (designed by my partner in crime, Alexis, and featuring timeless lyrics from Samuel Medley):

Very simple, yet effective message, inspirational imagery, and the soothing truth of God's grace. With the boost of my monthly offering, we received 5157 impressions for an audience outside of our church, 349 interactions (likes, comments, shares), and—to our surprise—members of our community unassociated with the church even commented on our post. Here is a smattering of the comments:

"God is so almighty- we're all so blessed"

"I love this hymn- it's one of my favorites. Beautiful and draws the loving spirit that dwells within me."

And simply,


Regardless of whether or not people were visiting our church for Easter — which was our intended goal — they were being blessed and encouraged by the glorious truth of the resurrection.

We were mind-blown. Suddenly, our naive goal of simply gaining more visitors for Easter became dim in the light of evangelism of God's truth to grateful ears.

How can you do it? Easy:

Next to anything you post on your church Facebook page, you have the option to "Boost Post." Do this and you'll be given options for age groups, locations, budget, and duration of the promotion. It will look something like this:

Once you set your parameters and provide payment information, you're good to go. The best part? Watching the results roll in, and knowing that people are seeing a post that could make a significant difference in their lives, or at the very least remind them of God's love.

If you have budget to run paid promotions, don't wait. Pick services, church activities, or specific messages you want eyes on and throw some dollars towards them. If you don't have budget, even $5 can go a long way. (See the Pitfalls section of this presentation to see how!)

Our Easter promotion is one of our most successful so far, and a lynchpin example of how a small offering can go a long way in sharing the Gospel message.

What are you waiting for?

In very early A.D., Jesus gave a command: Go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you.

By 2018, a third of the world's entire population will be on social media. Social media is an avenue to share life's little moments, but in our case, it's also an avenue to take responsibility in fulfilling the Great Commission Jesus gave us. Disciples went into communities—even hostile ones—to share about Jesus' saving grace; we can boldly (and digitally) go into our community and share the exact same message the disciples did.

We look forward to hearing about your church social media initiative. Go boldly, and make your church a #SocialChurch, and your school a #SocialSchool.

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Halie Nabbefeld (Fox Valley Lutheran High School) 2016-10-10 3:14:46pm
How do you know what to post throughout the week on the Facebook page?
Jordan 2016-10-14 1:15:43pm
Excellent question, Halie! Digging up content is one of the hardest parts of running a social media page, but fortunately, whether it's a page for your school or church, you have tons of resources. Announcements in your school newsletter or church bulletin for events, Bible studies, reminders about what people can be praying for, etc. are a fantastic place to start. Create your own videos, or share videos that other churches have produced. And we have an endless supply of posting material in our favorite book too: the Bible! Encouraging verses or verses that correspond with holidays or events going on in the world (Jesus calming the storm during Hurricane Matthew or a verse from 1 Corinthians 13 on Valentine's Day, etc.), are often just what your page visitors need to hear.

Happy posting!
Jennifer, Shayna, Katie, Jacob (Fox Valley Lutheran Highschool) 2016-10-10 3:45:55pm
What would happen if someone would post something on the page and how would you respond. These are very good points.
Jordan 2016-10-14 1:19:40pm
Fantastic question, J, S, K, and J! There are settings within Facebook Pages where you can prevent people from posting on your page without you first approving the comment, image, etc. That's what we do, and it's worked out flawlessly. Go to "Settings" and then "Visitor Posts" and you can adjust who can post what on your page.

Good luck putting it together! :)
Leah Whitson (Wisconsin Lutheran College) 2016-10-18 3:18:54pm
My job is maintaining the Facebook page for Campus Ministry at Wisconsin Lutheran College, and I find all of your information to be so helpful! In my experience I have posted 3-4 times a week, and I am able to remind students and faculty about special upcoming events, which is very helpful. I totally agree that including videos and pictures with a short and sweet message is also so important, just because it helps for posts to standout. Your article is very helpful for any church or organization looking to start engaging through social media!
Jordan 2016-10-24 2:14:50pm
Hi Leah! I checked out your WLC page-- it looks great! Are you finding that students/faculty are engaging with your posts?

Keep up the terrific work!
Hailey Krause (Wisconsin Lutheran College) 2016-10-18 3:44:14pm
In this day and age, I think it is crucially important to have a social media page that embodies all aspects of the Christian faith. The mission statement and formation is vitally important to overall creation to the page which is great that you included. I think the balance between over-posting and under-posting is important because you want to get your message across, but you do not want to be overwhelmed with posts. A social media page can be extremely helpful for people who need God's word throughout their day and can be a sense of comfort in times of need. Images and videos regarding God's word add a little extra impact on the viewer because it helps people to relate in multiple different levels.
Jordan 2016-10-24 2:19:10pm
Hailey-- TOTALLY AGREE! I hear from people in our congregation that they'll be in line at the grocery store, walking their dogs, sitting at their desks at work, and they'll see something from our church pop up in their feed--a song from the past week, a video promo for a sermon, a Bible verse, whatever--and they'll have a moment of encouragement in their day. We need those little reminders (but yes--not TOO many!) :) Thanks for weighing in with your perspective!
Katy Jahns (Wisconsin Lutheran College) 2016-10-25 4:33:54pm
Alexis and Jordan,

I enjoyed reading your post and all of the information was prevalent to me as I'm enrolled in a business class on social media this semester. Your tips gave helpful insights and it is great to read about people who are making what I'm learning in the classroom their reality. Social media really has the power to change the game in terms of spreading the Word and our world is already seeing that. Your development strategy outlines how much work goes into posting content before the actual post is made and that kind of organization is the difference between a post that's effective or not. Overall, I appreciated your article a lot and I will look into those helpful sources you listed!
Jordan 2016-11-01 4:19:44pm Presenter
Hey Katy. It's amazing: social media is so second nature to most of us, but to actually run "programs" is really difficult! How cool that you'll be getting a formal education in it; you can give US some tips! :) Keep up the good work!
Justin Sievert (Wisconsin Lutheran College) 2016-10-26 8:12:12pm
This post was very enjoyable to read along with being very informative for those who do not have much experience in this. I consider myself to be one those individuals, because of this I found the Beware section to be helpful for those who are looking to start up a social media program. It brings to light many things that people do not think, which should better the ability to attract more viewers and successfully spread the Word to many. This is a great article and I will take this newly learned information for future social media involvement at my church.
Jordan 2016-11-01 4:21:11pm Presenter
Rad- thanks Justin! I'm glad this was helpful to you. Knowing the pitfalls of a social media program is half the battle, and I always find it helpful to think about what NOT to do, along with what TO do. Good luck with your church's budding social media presence!
Rachel Heyn (Wisconsin Lutheran College) 2016-10-28 5:07:06pm
I think it is great that you are sharing the importance of the use of social media as an evangelism tool. It can be easy for things like Facebook and Twitter to be reduced to a place where people rant, complain, and gossip, and it is unfortunate when it is misused like this, and it is definitely something that we should be aware of, especially as Christians. On the other hand, we can use it for good, as a tool for outreach and connecting with the community. I really enjoyed learning about different small ways that a church’s page can be more successful in sharing the Gospel with others. I really like the idea of setting goals in terms of social media. I had not really thought of that before, but I think that it is definitely really important in order to be sure that you are aiming to accomplish something. I think that social media can be a great tool for evangelism when used responsibly. I like to post Bible verses on my Facebook page occasionally, especially if I am having a bad day, for example. It is a good reminder for myself, and it is also a way to share encouragement with others. Additionally, it is a great way to witness your faith in a simple, yet non-intimidating way.
Jordan 2016-11-01 4:22:58pm Presenter
Rachel -- exactly! Much of what we know would encourage us during the day is what would encourage others too. :) Absolutely agree on the "non-intimidating" nature of social media in sharing faith. You still get lots of reach in a setting lots of people are comfortable with. Keep it up!
Sarah Beischel (Wisconsin Lutheran College) 2016-10-28 11:29:07pm
Hi Jordan and Alexis! I found this post very applicable and helpful for me. I have recently taken on the task of maintaining all of the social media and web design for the Lighthouse Youth Center in Milwaukee, which is a place where kids in the community can come for recreational activity, academic help, study the Scriptures, and enjoy the positive influence of adult Christian mentors. For us social media is huge. It is a way to get the word out about our mission without spending too much money. Since this program is free of charge to the community, we rely strongly on donations. Social media is a great way to target both audiences of our donors/supporters and the families of the youth center. People love hearing about what goes on at youth center. I recently just created an Instagram page for them and we wanted to use it to share all the wonderful things that are happening at Lighthouse. I especially enjoyed your '10 Church Social Media Pitfalls'. I will be taking all of these into consideration when posting for the Lighthouse. Your article gave me some great tips that I will definitely use when going forward with my time at Lighthouse.
Jordan 2016-11-01 4:24:41pm Presenter
Sarah- WOW! You have your hands full with that project; I'll check in on your Lighthouse FB from time to time too see how you guys are doing! What an amazing mission, and it's a fantastic idea to use social media to drive awareness for it. Best and blessings on your efforts!
Katy Brodesser (Wisconsin Lutheran College) 2016-10-30 10:13:40am
Alexis and Jordan, I really thought that this post was helpful. I, along with a few other people are in charge of different social media platforms at my church. Two of the members of the group are leaving and they put me in charge of training some new members. I found that you post was really helpful in showing me what I should teach the new group members instead of just trying to do it all myself.
Jordan 2016-11-01 4:26:53pm Presenter
Katy-- absolutely. We're all busy people, and making the Facebook page a team effort is WAY more efficient--and a great excuse for fellowship! :) Since we wrote this post, we've added even another member to our team who drives the video production we've been doing. As long as you have some guiding principles, everyone stays on the same page, and the social efforts really pay off. Good luck with training the "newbies" on your team, and blessings on your work!
Raquel Glinos (Wisconsin Lutheran College ) 2016-10-30 3:58:21pm
Alexis and Jordan,
I had an internship the summer of 2015 with Kingdom Workers and reading your article made me reflect on all of the effort that is put in to maintain social media pages. I was in charge of updating their Facebook page and twitter page. I also helped improve their Pinterest page. I already had a great appreciation for how heavily social media can influence today's society, but after reading this article my knowledge has grown and I hope it continues to grow. I appreciate what you guys do because now days it seems like the only way to get a message across to people is social media and it is important to have an understanding of how it works.
Jordan 2016-11-01 4:31:44pm Presenter
Raquel- oh that's awesome! I bet Kingdom Workers really appreciated your work while you were there. It's incredible the amount of knowledge you obtain when you're thrown into the social fray and have to ramp up quickly! Thanks for checking out our session, and best of luck with your future social endeavors!
Jared Bruemmer (Wisconsin Lutheran College) 2016-10-30 5:21:32pm
This is a great post and I will be sharing it with my church at home as they have started a Facebook page within the last year or so. I believe they have fallen into some of the pits you have mentioned above and I hope sharing this with them will help improve there following and outreach.
Jordan 2016-11-01 4:33:51pm Presenter
Way to look out for your church, Jared! Glad you had a chance to read this, and I hope it will be helpful for your church's social media presence.
Eden Ehlers (Wisconsin Lutheran College ) 2016-10-30 6:21:17pm
I agree that team foundation should be the first step. If you have a solid group of people who are all focused on a common goal, you are likely to be successful. Having specific roles and tasks laid out is also a great idea. If people are able to apply their strengths efficiently, the end goal is likely to be successful. Were the 10 "don'ts" as far as church posting based off of true experiences?
Jordan 2016-11-01 4:35:40pm Presenter
Hi Eden (what a beautiful name!) The 10 pitfalls are a combination of things we've encountered for our church social page, and pitfalls I've found in running the social media presence at the companies I've worked for. A lot of the principles in the social business world can apply to the social church world as well! Thanks for reading!
Yussef Sahraoui (Wisconsin Lutheran College) 2016-10-30 11:15:30pm
Social media is big in today’s world and being able to effectively use it can go a long way. Now a days, for some people at least, the only way to reach them is by social media. This is why it can be an effective tool when attempting to start a social media page for a school or church. By advertising your institution online, it will get more exposure and more people will have a chance to see what kind of establishment you want to put out there. The growth of your Church or School can really progress if many people buy into its online image thus prompting people to get involved in reality. I think more Churches and School should adopt this approach in the near future.
Jordan McMahon 2016-11-01 4:37:17pm Presenter
Yussef-- yes, you sound like you have your finger on the pulse of how to communicate a message to the world! We know social media is an effective way to "talk" to huge volumes of people; why not use it for the Gospel, right? And I agree- I think we'll see an uptick in Christian church and school social media page in the next couple years. Thanks for reading and commenting!
Benjamin Gorr 2016-10-31 12:40:19pm
Very good idea. I think it is fascinating how we can use social media to further Christs kingdom. I've seen a local video gain millions of views within a day, this to can be the case with starting Christian centered social media pages. Millions of people can view Christ centered ideas or scripture within hours or days. What do you think is in store for Christians on social media in the future? Will we be shut down and "logged off" by the policy makers?
Jordan McMahon 2016-11-01 4:41:06pm Presenter
Benjamin--super thought-provoking question! I hope that freedom of speech and freedom of religion in the U.S. would prevent that from happening, but it's a good reminder that we should be posting in love with the goal of encouraging people in Christ. Interestingly, I've found that with Facebook they actually do let you tag certain terms like "church," "Christianity," etc. when you're targeting audiences around you for paid promotion. And the fact that you can set up a page as a church or religious organization encourages me to believe that FB will keep the channels open--which is great for those of us finding it effective in spreading the gospel! Thanks for the great question, and for reading!
Nikilette Cottini (Wisconsin Lutheran College) 2016-10-31 2:09:12pm
Is it hard to constantly think of things to add to your social media page? I have personal social media pages and for most of them I hardly ever update them because I do not know what to put so I feel if I had a professional social media page I would feel the same way. I like how you stated to have a mission statement that defines the purpose of having the social media page, I think people will greatly appreciate that when looking at your page.
Nikilette Cottini (Wisconsin Lutheran College) 2016-10-31 2:10:21pm
Is it hard to constantly think of things to add to your social media page? I have personal social media pages and for most of them I hardly ever update them because I do not know what to put so I feel if I had a professional social media page I would feel the same way. I like how you stated to have a mission statement that defines the purpose of having the social media page, I think people will greatly appreciate that when looking at your page.
Jordan McMahon 2016-11-01 4:46:53pm Presenter
Hey Nikilette (<--coolest name spelling EVER). Coming up with content ideas is probably one of the biggest challenges of successfully running a program like this. This is why the bulletin (or school newsletter) is my best friend. Lots of "announcement" type ideas in there. Also, we shoot a sermon promo video each week, and then put up a service follow-up video which guarantees at least TWO posts per week! Having something on a regular cadence ("Wednesday in the Word" bible verses each week, for instance) guarantees that you keep the heartbeat of your page pumping. Not easy, but worth it! Thanks for the question!
Kelsey Sitz (Wisconsin Lutheran College ) 2016-10-31 2:20:48pm
I think this is absolutely amazing! The world has turned to technology so much lately and I think it is a great, and extremely smart, move to get churches online. Being a college student, I am constantly online whether I am researching things for homework or projects, or taking some "me time" and surfing around on Facebook or Twitter. Being able to see things about my church popping up on my timeline would be a very cool thing to be able to interact with and also a great way to remind me of things going on. With everything going on in the world these days, it is so important that we can get the Word of God and His love out to people in every way, shape, or form, and I think bringing it online is the best step. You are able to connect with so many more people a lot faster than every before. This is amazing and I believe it will do great things!
Katie Waskow (Wisconsin Lutheran College) 2016-10-31 11:29:32pm
I think that the church's use of social media could really help open its doors to a younger generation that may not have been reached before. It is all too easy for college students to become too busy with other things and church is often one of the last things on a student's mind. I like your point that it can be encouraging to find posts from the church on your page. I think that the use of social media will help encourage and bring the younger generation to the faith and local churches.
Jordan 2016-11-01 4:49:23pm Presenter
Kelsey-- totally agree. Since we're all busy people, it's nice to have something pop up that encourages us, or reminds us of ways we can get involved and give back in our church or school each week. Those pleasant pops of content are a nice contrast to what can sometimes get to be depressing on social media. Let's all keep shining the light on our pages! Thanks for reading and commenting. :)
Madeline Wunderle (Wisconsin Lutheran College) 2016-10-31 3:14:06pm
My church in Racine Wisconsin does a very nice job on their Facebook page promoting upcoming church events- so this post is easy to relate to. Our facebook page is public but anyone who likes it or is part of another group gets updated whenever there is a new post. Our church has not chosen to boost any posts as they try and encourage individuals to share posts to make it more of a personal connection with your online friends. I don't think that there are any set in stone ways to make posts, they can all be unique. This past Easter, our Pastor posted a 30 second video of the children in the Sunday school singing Jesus Loves Me and it had 12,000 shares as it was adorable and a good outreach to young families that are possibly looking for a new church to join. Social media can be a big help in areas that outreach in the Church field needs to invest their time in.
Jordan McMahon 2016-11-01 4:52:57pm Presenter
WHOA! That's really cool, Madeline! LOVE those real-world "success stories" on the impact of church social media. It would be great getting church social media leaders together more to share ideas that work, so that posts like the sweet Sunday Schoolers singing a song (that literally comforts me TO THIS DAY!) can proliferate through social media and encourage masses of people. Thanks so much for sharing that story! And keep up the good work Racine social media! :)
Kenya Green (Wisconsin Lutheran College ) 2016-10-31 3:30:20pm
I have recently been involved in a charity challenge where we are required to do things of this nature. However, I have not planned how you guys planned for the church Facebook. We have did most of what you listen but there are some things I find very useful in your paper that we have not used. As of now people can post onto our Facebook which I did not now we could stop. Also I love the set schedule that you used with excel to make. My team just posts on a whim I definitely feel we should have a organized manner of doing these things because it will make it easier and not last minute. How much does the paid promotions usually cost you and who do you go through to create them?
Jordan 2016-11-01 4:57:53pm Presenter
Hey Kenya! The charity challenge sounds cool! Glad you found the tips helpful. It's great to have some organization around Facebook, but don't feel bad if there's a lot of "ad hoc" posting going on! Social media can be a really good blend of planned content and organic "as it happens" content. Paid promotion is what you want it to be: you can set any budget (we've promoted posts for $5, and we've promoted posts for $100!); it all depends on how far you want it to potentially reach. Creating them is pretty simple too: identify your target audience (the people you hope to reach), pick a cool graphic, put together an interesting or inviting message, and boom--you're set! Wishing you blessing for your social efforts-- you'll have to post your results if you do a paid promotion! :)
Katie Waskow (Wisconsin Lutheran College) 2016-10-31 11:16:47pm
This post was very interesting to read. I have a social media account and know many of the basics and how to promote a message or idea. My home church does not have a facebook page. This post has inspired me to maybe bring up the idea of creating one. Our church body is lacking in the young adult and teen population. I think that having a facebook page and sharing upcoming youth group and church events would really help the younger generation get involved. I think one of the most important things this article mentions is to have your mission and campaign drive the content of the page. It is too easy to let the facebook page just become a place to share photos. But this is taking away from the real purpose of the page which is to get young people involved and increase attendance or whatever the goal may be.
Jordan 2016-11-01 5:00:33pm Presenter
Katie- brilliant idea. Social media is really THE way to connect with younger audiences, and you can meet them where they are! Are your friends on Snapchat or Instagram more than Facebook or Twitter? Maybe that's the network you use! Love that you're thinking about how to leverage social media to help your church; your ideas and efforts will be blessed!
Katie Waskow (Wisconsin Lutheran College) 2016-10-31 11:28:33pm
I think that the church's use of social media could really help open its doors to a younger generation that may not have been reached before. It is all too easy for college students to become too busy with other things and church is often one of the last things on a student's mind. I like your point that it can be encouraging to find posts from the church on your page. I think that the use of social media will help encourage and bring the younger generation to the faith and local churches.
Ryan Michael (Wisconsin Lutheran College) 2016-10-31 11:58:56pm
Great job on the article. It is a great message. I think one thing that schools/churches are often afraid of is not necessarily changing but adapting to technological advances that can help promote the school/church. It's always nice to see work like yours as well as all of the neat projects on here in the Gospel Outreach with Media program. For some, it can be frightening to change but in a way such as this where it can positively promote the gospel message in a way in which it can go out to a HUGE crowd I say "why not?"
Jordan 2016-11-01 5:03:35pm Presenter
Ryan-- that's a really good point. We ALL know that the Lutheran church can be a liiiiiiittle slow to adapt to current technological landscapes (I remember when PowerPoint in church was pretty innovative!), but it's really cool when we can present a program that shows how easy it is to be lights in the dark on social media AND keep our congregations/schools informed of church events. I agree with you-- "why not?" :) Thanks for reading and commenting!