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internet marketing, Social Media, Social Media Church

The Social Media Church

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By: Larry Lewis

I have been thinking long and hard about the issue of THE CHURCH and SOCIAL MEDIA. The Church, especially smaller churches, have a unique opportunity to utilize social media tools to reach out to it’s community and engaging it’s members through the use of Web.2.0 techniques.

Web based tools now make it possible for Churches to record a podcast of Sermons or Skype evening Bible studies so that members of smaller study groups can unite online.

Here are a few of the areas I think more churches can begin utilizing Social  Media:

Churches as other non-profits are facing tough times trying to keep funding for their various ministries coming in. A good idea might be to create a sponsored events page which the church could then use Twitter to send e-blast out in support of their sponsor(s). In that way the church can drive traffic to the sponsors site or store and build traffic through it’s own membership.

Create a Facebook page with event data, video content, and links to various audio and e-content.

Implement online collaboration web applications so that members that are elderly, sick or the disable who have a hard time traveling might participate in weekly bible studies. This would also help any member of the church increase their participation in study group.

Live podcasting of services and weekly topics put together by the church leadership. If the leadership  smaller churches want to build their membership, podcasting is an excellent way to involve members of the community in your online broadcast. Since many podcasting platforms offer free access, there is no cost to the Church to broadcast their podcast.

Resources and Tools

  1. www.Facebook.com
  2. www.Myspace.com
  3. www.Ustreamtv.com
  4. www.Blogtalkradio.com
  5. www.Wordpress.com
  6. www.Ning.com
  7. www.Skype.com
  8. www.Twitter.com
  9. www.Talkshoe.com

The Flamingo Road Church provides a good example of a Church that is using Social Media tools in the best way possible to reach out to the community and it’s membership.

Finally, in these tough times people really need help and direction, and many are reaching out to the church. If churches makes better use of Social Media, and works with someone who understands Social Media tools and applications, they will find a hidden flock of lambs.

These are just a few ideas, and by no-means an all-inclusive list, but I wanted to begin somewhere in my ongoing discussion of The Social Media Church

Happy Holidays to you all.

Larry Lewis is a Social Media Consultant with over 20 years of Experience in the Broadcasting and Barter industries. He can be contacted as follows

Larry.Lewis@supinn.com

Twitter: Realmatrix

Facebook: Larry Lewis

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Discussion

6 thoughts on “The Social Media Church

  1. Excellent Article! That was well written. It also address a very under utilize function for the church. As you know I am a pastor in Traing. We should start an online church. That is for another time.

    I am looking forward your next article. Keep up the good work.

    Posted by TechAngel | December 24, 2008, 3:38 pm
  2. It’s going to be up to tech-savvy church members themselves to get this ball rolling in their local church. Most church staffs are juggling too many things in their normal schedules to take the time to learn Web 2.0 social media theory and application.
    So don’t just expect your church to “get with the times” just because you put this idea in their suggestion box. Perhaps THIS is YOUR personal ministry involvement in the church.

    Posted by Jon Klement | December 30, 2008, 6:02 am
  3. Very well written and my prayer is it takes root. I agree with Mr. Klement in that it almost a ministry unto itself.

    Posted by Roy Dunn | January 11, 2009, 10:32 pm
  4. Larry – great post. To be relevant to a increasingly distant (from the church, anyways) generation, churches will have to embrace social media and its amazing outreach potential.

    I agree completely that it will be up to the “tech-savvy” church members to get the ball rolling. Individual members will have to “champion” this cause to make it happen. Hopefully they do, because as a church we are called to “go into all the world” – and social media vastly extends our outreach.

    I’m a co-founder of a project called SocialChurch – we aim to build churches on the social web, starting with Facebook. Check out our website and let me know what you think – http://www.socialchurch.com.

    Great blog post, thanks again.

    Ryan

    Posted by Ryan Stephen | January 21, 2009, 10:16 pm
  5. Larry – great post. To be relevant to a increasingly distant (from the church, anyways) generation, churches will have to embrace social media and its amazing outreach potential.

    I agree completely that it will be up to the “tech-savvy” church members to get the ball rolling. Individual members will have to “champion” this cause to make it happen. Hopefully they do, because as a church we are called to “go into all the world” – and social media vastly extends our outreach.

    I’m a co-founder of a project called SocialChurch – we aim to give churches a presence on the social web, starting with Facebook. Check out our website and let me know what you think – http://www.socialchurch.com.

    Great blog post, thanks again.

    Ryan

    Posted by Ryan Stephen | January 21, 2009, 10:17 pm
  6. Larry,

    This is a great article and awesome take on the use and leverage of social media. I’m often impressed in the many different ways leveraging social media can bring small communities together.

    This is another great aspect. Not only can they use social media to bring the church closer to their followers, but another way for the followers to engage more closely with each other as well, opening up avenues of constructive debate on recent sermons or whatever the church might bring up for discussion.

    It also might empower more followers to get more involved with different aspects of the church by feeling they have a say in things and be able to contribute more more easily.

    John

    Posted by John | July 16, 2010, 10:46 pm

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