Wednesday, October 30, 2013

ITC: 16 Church’s Internet Ministry Upgrades To Make This Week

16 Church’s Internet Ministry Upgrades To Make This Week
Want to give your church internet ministry a boost, but not sure where to start?
Here’s a list of things you can get started on right away to help you – directly or indirectly – reach more people.
Don’t be overwhelmed…you don’t need to try all of these at once.
Just find one that you feel motivated to work on or just try, and see what happens.
This list doesn’t replace a strategy. It’s just one of those kinds of lists you can refer back to when you have a little time to work on something but don’t want to take on a huge project.

Take your sermon to Facebook

Turn to the news

Take a current news item, and write a website post about it, applying a Christian perspective.

Become more welcoming

Write a friendlier and more genuine “welcome visitors” message (or page)for the website.

Get more ideas

Brainstorm a list of topics that could be posted about, either on the website or on Facebook. Make sure at least half of them are topics thatwouldn’t be too difficult to create.

Enlist some help

Make a list of people in your church who you could contact to ask to help with an aspect of the church’s internet ministry.
Specifically, look for people to fill any of the following roles not currently being served by a volunteer or staff member:
      • Content editor
      • Proofreader
      • Supplemental content writer
      • Web posting
      • Website and Facebook content coordinator

Do more internet outreach

Brainstorm additional ways your church could do internet outreach.

Better understand your visitors

Install Google Analytics (or other analytics package) on your website to help you better understand your site visitor patterns.

Do more of what’s working well

If you have an analytics package installed, identify the top pages in terms of TimeOnPageBounceRate (the percentage of site visitors who leave the site from the same page they first arrive at without ever interacting with the site), or just Visits (hits).
Jot down a list of ideas of new content you could create that would be best positioned to replicate (or improve upon) these top pages.

Fix what’s not working well

Again, if you have an analytics package installed, identify the worst-performing pages (in terms of the same statistics above) and make a list ofmodifications that could be made to the pages to improve their performance.

Make a quick video

Turn on your computer’s webcam and record a 90 second video.
The video could be aimed at a specific group within the larger audience for the website, for example, a video directed toward a youth group.
Present one point (and only one) that you’d like to convey. Give the viewer an introduction, something scriptural, an explanation and something they can apply to their lives.

Do outreach when people are most open to it

Think ahead to Christmas (or Easter) and make a list of ways that your internet ministry could be used to help reach people at that time of year.

Challenge yourself with something a little bit different

Write an easy blog-style post that’s different than what you’d normally create.
      • Write a blog post following up on themes from this past Sunday
      • Write a post preparing your congregation for the readings and themes for the upcoming Sunday. Even try out a point you’re thinking about for the sermon.
      • Write a Q&A-style “Ask the Pastor” post using questions you’ve been asked in the past week or two.

Showcase what’s going on around the church

Set up a church calendar in Google Calendar and embed it onto your website.

One topic. Multiple posts.

Identify a topic or style of posting that could be turned into either an ongoing or finite series of posts.
      • “Ask the Pastor”
      • A three-part series on aspects of living your faith at work
      • An ongoing series of posts for the youth in the church

See through visitors’ eyes

Pick a sampling of pages that currently exist on the website and then pretend you are a non-member (or even a non-Christian) but visited the site on a friend’s recommendation.
Make a list of the things you see which don’t make sense to you, sound too “churchy”, or which seem to be for “insiders”.
In other words, things which fail to engage you. Think about what’s missing.
Snapping back to yourself, sketch out a plan to do a better job of making the website more outreach-friendly.

Get feedback

Ask three people for their honest impressions of the website or Facebook Page (your choice), including the last time they visited it, and the reason they visited (at least in general terms).
If they’ve never visited, or can’t recall the last time they visited, find out what would make them more inclined to visit the site.

What would help your church?

Any of these items could help your internet ministry take a leap forward.

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