Why You Need to Know the Difference Between Benefits and Features

Like a good sermon, the message of your website must relate to your audience. They need to know why your church is right for them. Do this with a mix of benefits and features. Unfortunately we often confuse them and use them in the wrong context. In this article I review what benefits and features are. Then I give an example of how to use them on your church's website.
Continue reading "Why You Need to Know the Difference Between Benefits and Features"

Why Website Analytics Tell Half the Story

A key advantage websites have over traditional media is the ability to track every click. Servers log every action to be later scrutinized. Yet how we interpret that data is important. It is very easy to assume we know what our users were doing. In this article I show why it is important to find out why visitors are making these decisions.
Continue reading "Why Website Analytics Tell Half the Story"

When to Use Gated Content at your Church

Gated content is premium website content that sits behind some type of barrier. This seems counterintuitive to the Gospel message. We are to share the Good News with the world. Yet in some cases gated content can help your church grow. The key is knowing when to use this practice. In this article I will dig into this technique in greater detail.
Continue reading "When to Use Gated Content at your Church"

Inspiration from The Last Jedi

As with previous Star Wars movies, I found digital ministry lessons in The Last Jedi. Please know that this is a spoiler-free analysis of the movie. I reveal nothing about the Last Jedi's plot. I want to relate a secular movie to your church communications. So enjoy the parallels and get ready to be inspired.
Continue reading "Inspiration from The Last Jedi"

How to Quickly Create Personas for your Church

Personas are a tool to help focus discussions on users rather than yourself. Ideally, you do a lot of research first. Yet that is not always possible. How can you create something meaningful, but in a short period of time. Start with good guesses and help from church leadership. Present your findings to your larger team for minor edits. Then start moving forward on your projects!
Continue reading "How to Quickly Create Personas for your Church"

Finding the Tipping Point for Digital Ministries

The concept of "going viral" is not new to the Internet. Many news stories, videos, and images have all enjoyed their few moments of online fame. Yet how do you do the same for your digital ministries? In this article I will summarize one aspect of how things become popular; the people involved.
Continue reading "Finding the Tipping Point for Digital Ministries"

What can Star Wars Still Teach Us

Yet again I am finding inspiration from Star Wars. I noted quite a few things with the release of Episode VII. The trailers, the merchandise, and the movie were all very interesting. So what can digital ministry teams learn from this movie franchise re-launch? Here is a spoiler-free take on what you can learn from the various entities in charge of the Star Wars universe.
Continue reading "What can Star Wars Still Teach Us"

Taking Marketing Too Far At Your Church

In many articles I liken your church's digital strategy to that of an advertising firm. You are indeed showing the world why a relationship with God in Christ is great. Next you show them why your church may be a good fit for helping. But using trickery or marketing gimmicks to get people onto your website is just wrong. You want social media engagement, not just more clicks. Here are four things your teams should avoid using.
Continue reading "Taking Marketing Too Far At Your Church"

Church Social Media like a Cyborg

Cyborgs are science fiction characters that are primarily human, but have robot parts. They usually have the emotions of a human, but the physical strength and speed of a machine. This is how you need to run your church's social media campaigns. Some aspects need to show the human emotions of the people in your church. Other aspects are automated by a computer to allow for better productivity. This balance is what your church should strive to achieve.
Continue reading "Church Social Media like a Cyborg"

3 Rules for Church Email Newsletters

Email is still a viable technology today, and this article will help you make the most of it. Email was first used in 1971, yet it is still one of the most effective methods to communicate with your audience. Social media is quickly becoming a pay to play market. Relying on visitors to regularly check your website is a joke. In fact the only line of communication that gets a higher connection rate is SMS text messages. So let us dig into some ways to make your church email newsletter more effective.
Continue reading "3 Rules for Church Email Newsletters"

How Your Church Can Use Social Media Marketing

Many social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter started out with no solid business model. They were homegrown startups dreamed up by people who wanted to enable something amazing. Soon millions of people engaged with each other via these outlets. To create a sustainable business model, it became a "pay to play" world for businesses. In this article I will discuss what this new realm of social media marketing is. I will explore what types exists, and what your church can do to get the most out of them.
Continue reading "How Your Church Can Use Social Media Marketing"

Content Marketing for Your Church

The latest buzzword in advertising is content marketing. Believe it or not, your church can benefit greatly from this new trend. At its core, content marketing is providing valuable content to your customers. Your church does this nearly every week with your pastor's sermon. Similar examples are most likely around your church. This article will help you identify them and turn them into a great content marketing campaign.
Continue reading "Content Marketing for Your Church"