As college students are packing their bags to go back to school at the end of the summer, there are a few steps that churches can take to make sure their college students are feeling cared for. As a college student myself, I find that it is always a big transition when you start attending church at a new place at the beginning of the semester. It is hard to feel connected to your church when you are hundreds of miles away, so here are a few easy tips for churches to keep college students engaged when they head back to school.
“Why haven’t they replied to the email? I sent it over a week ago.”
—A pastor who shall remain anonymous
That is a true complaint I have heard from another pastor. And I have heard similar remarks from other people. In fact, I am fairly certain I have made a parallel lament at some point myself. I am also willing to bet that the readers of this blog have made it too.
On my job description, it says, “Develop templates for media, agendas, and the like to assist busy ministry teams and lay volunteers in creating better message-driven content in a more effective amount of time.”
Great. I can do that, not too hard.
Creating a church webpage should be easy, shouldn’t it?
Whether we’re talking about a home page, an about page, or a simple blog post—type it up and hit “publish,” right? But if you want your page to actually get read, it’s not that simple.
Don’t worry, it’s not that hard, either, but it is important to know how to structure your page so that readers want to read it.
For any organization, big or small, one of the biggest hurdles to overcome is the employees learning to communicate with one another. Most problems that occur within a church staff happen because people aren’t communicating well, the ball gets dropped on a big project, or someone is left waiting on a piece of work they were expecting to receive.
I’ve had the opportunity to work for multiple organizations with larger staffs, and two of those have been churches with multiple sites. Communication at places like these can be extra difficult because not only do you need to learn to communicate well with the people you work with, but those coworkers also happen to be at a different location from you, typically miles away. It takes careful attention and a lot of hard work to ensure problems don’t arise because of lack of communication.
I often wonder if one of the biggest challenges facing Church Communicators is deciphering the who, what, where, why, and how of church news and events. Our efforts often are spread among multiple mediums, our time is spread thin to format and reformat content, and still we often receive feedback about people not “hearing” our message. (Here’s a great article to help set up your communication framework.)
Ash Wednesday is just about a week away, which means there are less than two months until Easter. Have you started planning your Easter communications yet? I realize for some churches, this started happening before Christmas, but for many of our readers, Ash Wednesday is the day the clock starts ticking.
So there’s a big event coming up at church, and you’re the one doing the communications. You’ve got to get the word out to members and the community. You’ve got to get other people on board for the marketing and make sure they can do what you need them to do. It’s a lot to do, and it might just be a big swirly ball of chaos inside your mind. Or maybe you don’t know where to start and feel like you’re staring at a blank canvas. So how do you get started?
Here’s an outline for coordinating the marketing for an event. It’s the same process I used when running the marketing for a huge event that happened at my church a few weeks ago. This road map will guide you through the planning, execution, and analysis process, helping you manage a campaign that is comprehensive and well organized.
Even in the age of social media, email still proves to be more effective than social media when reaching people. In the last five to ten years, email providers, email clients, and government regulations have combined to provide better management, more personalization, and less spam for an overall better email experience. Unfortunately, many organizations (even churches) don’t use email to its fullest and can end up abusing it.
The best way to leverage email is to properly manage your lists so you can provide the most relevant content to the right audiences. Here are some principles of list management to help you make the most of email communications.
God has a habit of opening and closing doors in our lives. He uses these opportunities to shape us and grow us into the person He created us to be. Sometimes it's easy to walk through a door He's opened up. Perhaps you're in a job you know isn't a forever job for you, but you're just patiently waiting until finally, He opens up that new door and you can move into the career you've always wanted to.