Church & Social Media
By Amy Hertsenberg
Social media has weaved its way into the very fabric of our culture. It’s not just a fad, but a very essential public forum for people, businesses, and churches alike to come together. As of June 2018, there were over 1.47 billion (with a "b") active daily users on Facebook and over a billion monthly users on Instagram. You have the ability to reach just about anyone, anywhere, at any time with social platforms that large. It provides churches with an incredible opportunity to share the kingdom of heaven with the world.
“I have become all things to all people, so that I may by every possible means save some. Now I do all this because of the gospel, so I may become a partner in its benefits” - 1 Corinthians 9:22-23
The challenge is to keep your ultimate goal in mind, “to make disciples”. Numbers are not your goal. Money is not your goal. Deep meaningful relationship with the Lord IS your goal. The question is, how can you use social media to help facilitate that relationship for your congregation and those who are not here yet?
Build relationships with your congregation - We say it all the time, faith doesn’t solely exist inside the walls of a church, but it’s wherever two or more are gathered. Using social media can exponentially expand the mission of your church beyond your building. Platforms like Facebook, Instagram, or even Twitter give you the opportunity to share the love of God to people right where they are. Whether they are at their desk on a Tuesday or out with friends on a Friday night, your social accounts give your congregation and the community around you an opportunity to connect with Christ throughout the week, not just on Sunday mornings.
Help them connect with God throughout the week. Ask them how you can pray for them or give them a devotional to go through each day. Share your Sunday sermons online for those who couldn’t be there. Start conversations that help answer their questions. Whatever that relationship looks like for you, use social media to help deepen their relationship with the church and with God.
Provide an avenue for your members to connect - We are meant to be in relationship with one another. While you’re building a way for your congregation and potential visitors to connect with you, help them connect with one another too. Help guide them to like-minded people to one another and provide them with resources to foster strong-lasting relationships.
Create groups for families, youth, moms, or whoever. Create conversations that help them connect with one another. Whatever it looks like for you, help your congregation and those looking for a deeper connection with Christ find their spot in your church.
Allows potential visitors to do their research - The reality is, before someone comes to your church for the first time, they are going to do a little bit of research. They’ll take a look at your website and your social accounts to see what you are all about. Right then and there, they are deciding whether or not they want to take another step and actually come to a service. Your social presence should be designed to not only connect with your current congregation but be inclusive enough so that a visitor can scroll through your Facebook and feel invited. Give them a sneak peek behind the scenes.
Let them get to know the pastors and staff members. Share a video of your amazing worship team and show them why your church can help them dive deeper into their faith. Stream your sermons live. Share stories from your congregation that showcase real people that dove into faith at your church. The goal is to make them feel familiar and comfortable so that when they walk through your doors on a Sunday morning, they feel at home.
Amy, who has a Bachelors in Public Relations with Minors in Social Media & Marketing has a passion for both following Jesus and social media. She currently has a full-time job as the social media strategist at trustaff and enjoys taking on freelance opportunities with churches. You can find out more about Amy or get in contact with her by visiting her website: https://www.amyhertsenberg.com/