The world we live in is more connected than ever before. Don’t believe me? Check out these stats. Seventy five percent of the world’s population now has access to a mobile phone and the ability to send a text. There are 3.3 billion people online today, and eighty-five percent of them are using email. Out of those online, 1.4 billion of them are on Facebook. We are more connected than ever.
Email is a great way to communicate with your entire audience at once. We use email to shares stories, promote upcoming series, and make announcements. In many ways it has replaced our traditional bulletin.
If you’re sending mass emails, make sure you’re using a program like MailChimp. MailChimp allows you to import those email addresses that have just been sitting in your directory collecting dust all at one time. Your emails will look more professional, and the great thing is it’s absolutely free up to 2,000 subscribers.
People are quick to downplay Facebook these days because of the sheer amount of junk that people post. I feel their pain, but instead of ignoring it, why not try to curb the trend and post something positive? If all of us did this, maybe we’d see it start to sway in the other direction.
The opportunities to connect with people on Facebook are endless. Just this past weekend we had a first time couple visit our church. After church I friended them on Facebook and messaged them to say, “Thanks for visiting. I hope you enjoyed it. Let me know if you have any questions.” They quickly replied with “Thanks. We loved it, and we’ll see you next week.”
That may seem like a small thing, but it communicates that you care about them. And it’s something most churches aren’t doing. Just think, what if you trained your host team or greeters to start doing this? How big of an impact would that have on first-time guests? In a world looking for connection, this goes a long way.
It seems the older I get, the more I hate to talk on the phone. Is it just my house, or is there something about talking on the phone that attracts young kids? If I ever get on the phone, it’s like an alarm goes off to my two daughters to come annoy me.
So, please send me a text message. The great thing about a text is I can reply at my convenience. Which means if I need to give something a little more thought, I have the opportunity to do that. I’m guessing many people in your congregation prefer a text instead of a call as well. Not all, but many.
That’s why we ask our leaders to text their volunteers a few days before they’re scheduled to serve. We also tell small group leaders to text reminders to their attendees. Life is busy, and it’s easy to forget. We even have leaders who text their volunteers scripture each day.
We’ve yet to jump into the world of Instagram and Snapchat, and we’ve only dabbled in Twitter. We know these are areas younger people are going, but living in a small town we’ve found that email, Facebook, and text connect best with the majority of our people.
We’re always looking for ways to get better, so please let us know how you’ve been using digital communication to connect in your church in the comments below.