By now, it should be apparent enough that social media has come to stay.
Social media is one of the best ways to reach more people while engaging current members, especially the younger generation.
Many churches have adopted the use of social media to add an online extension of their ministry. There are countless church accounts or pages on various social media platforms, which is excellent. However, sometimes churches’ social media game has not been without some significant mistakes. Fortunately, these mistakes are easy to avoid.
In this article, we will point out these top church social media mistakes to avoid to help you develop a more rewarding online community.
Not having a Content Calendar / Posting Schedule
Regardless of the social media platform your church uses to put out its message, the key to getting the right response from followers is consistency. Consistency here is posting content that is visible to followers on a reliable schedule with some degree of frequency.
The solution to this is to develop a content calendar and a posting schedule. Having these enables you to plan your content for a specified period and publish accordingly. Scheduling tools like Buffer and Hootsuite allow you to connect all your social media accounts, and automate your postings on the platforms. Even If you intend to do it manually, having a calendar prepared would help you set reminders to post content. So you see, it’s not as complicated as you may think.
Also, there isn’t one hard rule about how often you should post. It all depends on the message your church is trying to get out to its audience per period.
Not interacting with followers and subscribers
The point of a social media platform is to interact. When people ‘follow’ your church on social media, they expect to experience some type of engagement. Don’t give the impression that you don’t care what your followers have to say.
Thus, you should block-off specific times to read and respond to comments as well as answer questions. Encourage your members to interact with your social media channels.
If your church is just getting started on social media, actively interacting with your followers helps to keep them engaged right from the very beginning.
You must also note that Interacting with followers can take up a lot of time if you don’t keep the time commitment in check. Still, beyond posting new content, you must set aside some time for engagement with your followers.
Remember that you are not setting up social media accounts for your church because that’s what every other church seems to be doing. You need to have a goal in mind. Having a goal helps you monitor and track your progress as a church, and tells you how close you are to your goal.
Every social platform has some type of analytics to help you understand what posts are getting the most interaction with your followers, or which posts are getting shared the most.
Goals vary with churches, but it is essential that you take time to study these insights, note relevant information, and use them to develop new strategies to serve your online followers better.
One thing to keep in mind is that you don’t get deep insights after only a few days of posting; there certainly isn’t going to be enough data to give tangible reports. It’s best to allow a few weeks of posting while ensuring analytics are turned on, before looking for trends in the data.
Trying to be on All Platforms
It is a common mistake, especially among smaller churches. While it’s not advisable to pick only one social media platform to be on, it’s also not realistic to try to be on all social media networks at once. Well, yes, large churches are possibly on all social platforms, but remember that they have dedicated social media teams to handle all their activities on social media.
If your church is small, you want to limit the number of social networks you’re on. Only make sure you are on at least two platforms. You also might want to do a little research to find out which platforms are best for you to start with. Facebook and Youtube are a good start for churches. There is an opportunity to reach more people and build a large community on these networks. Both platforms also allow you to live-stream services and put out recorded sermons online.
The stress of managing your online church community as well as your live streams and sermons can be eased with our church management tool, ChurchPad. ChurchPad has been innovated and designed to help church leaders and administrators better manage essential activities such as these, and more.
Social media remains a vital tool for churches to leverage. But the onus is on you to help it along. A way to do that is to avoid these costly mistakes.