When it comes to the way your church communicates, consider how your messages are being experienced by the people you’re trying to reach.
Do you know what your church’s message is to your community? Do you know how guests are experiencing your church when they visit for the first time? Are you engaging the next generation of leaders in a way that equips and empowers them to reach their friends and spheres of influence?
Three foundational elements of effective church communication
In a world that’s noisier than ever, the strategy and effort we put into communicating with church members has become increasingly important. If you want to improve the way your church engages its members, here are three foundational truths you need to understand.
- Find your story. Churches are often uncomfortable with the concept of brand development, but in reality, a brand is just the story other people tell about you. To help figure out what your unique brand as a church is, begin by looking at what you currently do. Ask yourself, “What is my church known for?” Distill it down to the basic elements. Next, imagine you are starting over. If you were a church plant today, what would you want your church to be known for? What’s left in the end is your story, and that story is a guide for how to spend your time, effort, and energy to build it into your brand.
- Realize that every word has meaning. Use language that dissolves the barrier between insiders and outsiders. While you might love the clever name for your kindergarten Sunday school class, a visitor with a 6-year-old might not know that the ‘Explorer Room’ is where she should take her child. Churches love to use acronyms and internal phrases, but if you are new to the church, those things make you feel like an outsider. It’s uncomfortable. How we make people feel is often more important than the words we are using.
- Don’t fight the future. Did you know that the millennial generation is the largest in North American history? This generation is and will be the future leaders of Christianity, and they are digital natives. More than 90% of millennials believe they have a responsibility to make a difference in the world. We need to equip them with the technological tools they need to leave a mark that matters, while at the same time remembering that we need to use technology to create engagement, not just noise.
Effective communication is a basic building block of reaching our community. It is not something to be overlooked or put on the back burner.
Have you determined what your church’s story is? How are you using your story as a guide?