I’ll never forget the quick response I received on Twitter one day when I asked the question, “What are some things churches can share on Twitter?” Someone tweeted back, “Nothing.” I thought, uh oh! If the church has nothing to say on social media then we’re in big trouble!
The truth is the church has a lot to say! All you might need is something to stimulate a little creativity. So today I’m going to give you 21 status update ideas for your church or ministry.
But I’m not even going to mention the big boring updates that most churches do such as using social media as a digital bulletin board (bad idea) or as a place to constantly invite people to your events or services (really bad idea!). Instead I’m going to give you status ideas that will offer real value to people so that when you do (on occasion) invite people to your church, you’ll have a greater response because you’ve offered so much value first and invited less.
So here are 21 Awesome Status Ideas for Your Church
1. Create an Infograph
Infographics are awesome because they are usually fun to look up, filled with interesting facts and thus educational. You can create your own infograph with a free tool called infogr.am.
2. Ask a Questions
Asking a question in a social status is a great way to increase your engagement and visibility. For example, “Hey, we’re curious to know…?” “Yes or no, is this a good idea…?” “What do you guys thing of this…?”)
3. Statistics and Data
Offering interesting statistics and data that is relevant to your message is sure to get more engagement and spark conversations among the Fans of your church’s Facebook Page or Twitter feed.
4. Candid Behind-The-Scene Pictures
Take a picture of the worship team praying just before getting up on the platform. Post a picture of the kitchen staff preparing the after service fellowship brunch. Snap a random photo of your pastor in his study. People love behind-the-scenes pictures. It makes them feel a part of the action, plus they appreciate the effort that goes into a service or event all that much more.
5. Testimonies or Stories
Stories are the backbone of our society, especially relatable ones. People love stories because stories offer hope and bring us joy, or they cause grief and move us to action. So share encouraging or inspiring stories or testimonies often.
6. Helpful Resource
People are so busy that anything you can share with them that will make their life easier or help them in some way, they’ll greatly appreciate it. So find and share resources that your audience will love. (Example: “Hey, having trouble finding the time to pray consistently? Check out this Prayer Calendar App by Voice of the Martyrs!”)
7. Slideshare Presentation
Slideshare is a free tool that will basically allow you to create, upload and post an awesome visual presentation. These are both fun and educational and a great way to complement a study or sermon series! Click here to learn more about Slideshare.
8. Ask For Testimonies
As I said above, stories are awesome. People love testimonies. In fact, just about the only thing people love more than hearing other people’s stories, is the chance to share their own! So ask people to share their story to your Facebook wall or Twitter account.
9. A Day in the Life
Run “A Day in the Life” update series. For example, “We’re beginning a new ‘A Day in the Life’ series beginning this Monday. We’re going to give you a Day in the Life of our youth pastor Steve Johnson. What are Steve’s struggles or adventures? How much time does he spend preparing content? etc. If there’s something you want to know about the daily life of a Youth Pastor, leave a question below.”
10. Random Tips
Random tips are both fun and helpful. Suggest ways that people can share Christ without being push online, or offer suggestions to develop a daily prayer habit. Make a list of random tips and keep it going. When you need something to post, open your Random Tip notebook and pull from that.
11. Recommend Someone Else
One of the best ways to share that you care more about your audience than serving your own interest is by sharing someone else. Highlight the work of a member of your church, or share your favourite author or a link to an article you found on the internet.
12. Create A Short Video
Video may be the most powerful ministry tool of the future (especially live video through apps like Periscope – but I’ll leave that for another day). Use Instagram or Facebook on a smartphone to create a short video. In this video you can share something in your life, in your church, answer questions, the possibilities are almost endless. The thing about videos is that they are more personal than almost any other type of content you could share.
13. Breaking News
Breaking news always gets people’s attention. Especially if it concerns them in some way. Use social media to get out urgent information when there’s something that can’t way until Sunday.
14. Profile a Volunteer or Staff Member
Run a weekly series where you highlight a volunteer, ministry staff member or regular parishioner. Include a photo along with that persons interests and share why you appreciate them.
15. Sunday School Student of the Month
Honour members of your churches Sunday School program by mentioning them and sharing a story of why you’re honouring them. Note: be sure to always get permission when sharing an image of someone – especially if that someone is a child.
16. Do a Post Series
Like a sermon series you can run a small post series that enhances a Bible Study or takes your sermon series to the next level. Most sermons are forgotten within an hour of having been delivered. So a post series that coincides with your sermon is a great way to keep your sermon alive and keep people engaged long after you’ve preached it.
17. Host a Google+ Hangout Study
A Google+ Handout has so many possibilities. But perhaps one of the most advantageous is that with Google+ Hangouts you can host a live and interactive Bible Study for members who are housebound and not able to make it out to a study. You can create the hangout and invite people into the hangout to ask questions and be engaged. But then you can also post the hangout on your Facebook page so other people can watch it live right in Facebook.
18. Share a Quote
People love inspirational quotes from famous personalities. That’s why quotes are so popular. And image quotes are the best because they can often be accompanied by emotionally high images. You can create an awesome image quote with Canva – a free social media image creation website. And you can even add animated text to it with this really affordable app called Legend.
19. In the Moment Updates
In the moment updates are great because they invite people to share things that are happening in the moment. Stuck at the airport? Create a video and make fun of yourself. Hosting a concert at your church? Snap a photo and share to Instagram with the caption, “I can’t believe this is happening right now! #JarsofClay!”
20. Answer “Ask the Pastor” Questions (#ATPastor)
When I was a teenager my Youth Pastor ran a segment every Saturday called Ask the Pastor. It was great because we could ask him almost anything and because we valued his opinion, we learned so much! You can do something similar on social media. Collect questions throughout the week or month and on a set date run an #ATPastor segment on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.
21. Share Your Stance On A Hot Topics
Be careful, but don’t be afraid to take a stance on a hot topic. People may not always agree with you, and online debates are rarely civil, but if you manage it will, you can encourage a very positive discussion on an important subject. And people will come to appreciate and respect you for your views, even if they don’t agree with you.
Add Value and Give Before You Invite
Recently I interviewed Nils Smith for a Strategic Mission Class for Gospel Sneeze Academy. It was a great discussion and one thing Nils said to me was that between 90% – 95% of the content his church shares would fit, in some way, into the category of Inspiration and only about 5% – 10% of the content would fall into the category of “Information” (i.e. announcements and invites).
When all your church does is promote itself and ask them to visit, people on Facebook and Facebook itself doesn’t treat those posts very kindly.
In fact I just sat in a webinar by Amy Porterfield who pointed out that if Facebook thinks your posts are too promotional, Facebook won’t push your post into people’s newsfeed. So if you’re wondering why the number of people who view your posts are so low, maybe you should examine the types of content you share. If they are too promotional (“come to our church for this or that…”), Facebook’s algorithm is designed to intentionally prevent your post from gaining visibility.
But if you share content that adds value to your audience, content like the 21 ideas I’ve listed in this post, more people will see and interact with your online presence, more people will follow and engage, you’ll have a greater impact and yes, when you do on occasion invite them to an event or ask them to do something for you, the likelihood of that happening will go way up!
Get “Status: 24 ReUsable Tweets & Facebook Updates” Free
By the way, I’ve created a PDF document that will give you 24 more status ideas. I researched what six of the top churches are doing on social media and adapted their practices into 24 reusable tweets and Facebook updates that you can use on your church’s social media sites. You can’t buy Status, but you can get it for free, along with a whole suite of other resources, by simply subscribing to my website. Click here to get them now.
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