Thank you for joining us in Church Leader Insights this week. We have some great reading for you to check out.
For the past few years, podcasts have been the hot new medium on the Internet. And while they are still growing in number and in popularity, a relatively more traditional medium has recently experienced a comeback of sorts on the Internet. That medium is video.
Online video has exploded over the past few years with the switch from chronological social media timelines to algorithmic ones. This impacts your church as well. If you’re still posting text only updates about what’s going on in your church—on either Facebook or Twitter—your updates are likely being suppressed and are not reaching much of your audience. Video can help fix that. Video can increase the exposure of your church’s ministry now more than ever. Here are five reasons why:
1. Video captures attention longer. The main reason social media sites are promoting more and more video to users is because it keeps users on the site or in the app longer. Want to capture the attention of your members or of potential guests? Use video updates.
2. Video is cheaper and easier to make than ever before. Online video for your church has never been easier. A smartphone is really all you need to produce a quick and simple video update or announcement. Add a tripod, an inexpensive microphone, and a well-lit area, and your video will border on professional level quality.
3. People often remember video more than text. Want to drive home a point to your church members? Use video to do it. We live in a visual society. Many of your members are visual learners. Video will likely communicate your message—and the Gospel message—to them the best.
Plant a wheat seed, and it will turn into a wheat stalk that can produce hundreds of wheat seeds. Plant an acorn, and it will grow into an oak tree that will produce thousands of acorns.
In the harvest, what comes back to you is always greater than what you sowed.
This also works for the things we don’t want to see multiplied. Anybody who has ever tried to grow a nice lawn of fescue knows that if you get even the smallest amount of Bermuda grass in there, it will take over. Where I previously lived, my neighbor planted Bermuda grass (apparently on purpose). When I asked my dad how to deal with this, he said, “Unless you put down a barrier, that pretty much means your lawn is going to be Bermuda in a few years.” So, I just moved.
People sometimes feel like this law of multiplication is unfair—not in lawn care, but in their lives. They make a few bad decisions, and when life falls apart, they think, “Well, I know I haven’t always made the wisest decisions, but I don’t deserve all this.”
You’re exactly right. But what you are experiencing is probably not punishment; it is harvest. And the law of the harvest doesn’t operate according to exact proportions. Seeds don’t stay seeds; they turn into massive trees. What we reap always comes back to us greater than what we sow.
Over the Christmas season I think my Facebook feed had the most ads in it I have ever seen. What does that mean for those of us who are running ads. It means more competition for our audience’s attention. It also means we have to get smarter to get noticed.
Many miss some of the basic principles that will improve your adverts performance and results. Here are nine that I can think of off the top of my head:
1) Start with the end in mind. Do you want clicks to your website? New likes? Subscribers to your email?
2) Your creative should support your goal. It needs to make sense for the viewer to take the next step.
3) Break down your ad creative development into three components.
b) Photo (or videos)
c) Call to action button (really important that you add this as it will increase your engagement)
Last month we had our Blue Christmas gathering at The Refuge. A contemplative space, Refuge friends created different stations to engage with different aspects of a season that can be hard for so many in different ways. My favorite station was centered on images of Mary and Jesus in a wide variety of cultures. The reflection included the Christian mystic Meister Eckhardt’s words. Eckhardt (like other mystics), uses language that pulls us out of our usual frame to draw nearer to the intimacy of God. He says, “We are all meant to be mothers of God…for God is always needing to be born.”
“We are all meant to be mothers of God…for God is always needing to be born.”
This current political administration has been kicking my tail for almost exactly a year now. The constant onslaught to so many values and people I deeply care about has been brutal.
I have been struck more than ever on how right now we are in desperate need of mothering in the world.
God is always needing to be born.
Oh how we need more God-birthing, not systematic dismantling of so many protections for the poor and vulnerable.
More reflections of Jesus in not just our lives but our systems and groups.
More examples of humility and mercy and compassion and sacrifice.
Thank you to our sources for this week’s blog posts:
Thom S. Rainer – Why Your Church Needs to Use Video More in 2018
J.D. Greear Ministries – You Don’t Reap What You Sow; You Reap More
Steve Fogg- 9 Quick And Easy Ways To Improve Your Facebook Ad Results
Kathy Escobar – 5 reasons we need more women leading in the world