In the past couple of weeks I’ve been feeling like I should be doing more work for churches in the area. I really don’t even know where this thought comes from since I’m completely untraditional and would be completely against the grain from people who work at churches. When I have spoken to pastors lately a good majority of them are actively searching for bringing in more millennials to their church. To me it is completely easy to see what the issue is. Most churches that I have researched or pastors I have met with are still doing things that are the early 2000s and most of the time even earlier. They don’t realize that times have changed and they can still do things that pastors before them did in the 90s, 80s and 70s and succeed. If you haven’t realized yet but we are in a completely different world.
These pastors or church leadership aren’t capitalizing on what social media can do for their church when promoting what they do. Besides just changing up the flow of their service these churches are still using old means such as radio, billboards and tv ads to promote. Not only are these things expensive but people’s attention are no longer in these places. This is very crazy to me since I feel like this is the only industry where pastors and church members run away from everything that would be considered up to date. It’s something I really don’t understand. When it comes to the world that we live in today every church should be live streaming or putting out content online or at the bare minimum at least be able to accept donations/ tithes/ offerings online.
So when I thought about it I wanted to come up with a quick tangible list of things that all pastors can be doing, if they aren’t doing so already, that can quickly turn your congregation around and lead to more growth with millennials.
– Put out short 3-5 minute video clips from your sermons on Facebook. These clips need to be the most engaging parts of your sermon. Not only will these be easily shareable online but will allow other people outside of your church to be able to see what type of pastor you are and what messages you are putting out.
– What To Use Social Media Platforms For: Facebook – for longer videos and start shareable conversations; Instagram – for more everyday lifestyle stuff as well as showing quick recap videos from events, event flyers, quote images and sharing personality using Instagram Stories; Twitter – for short text messages like quotes from sermons, sermon notes, and just random quick thoughts; Snapchat – is for showing personality, as well as behind the scenes activities and everyday life.
– Q+A Video Series: this is where the pastor answers questions from people sending them in. Most time pastors never get to the true questions that people have which why religion doesn’t resonate with most millennials. This should be done either as a YouTube show or on Facebook like for the most engagement.
– Engaging Posts: If there is something that needs to be discussed or just a question that needs to be asked, this would be where it needs to be done. Questions would that would be engaging would be “What activities would you like to see us do for our youth?”. The key to engaging posts is not just posing the question but once people start to comment on it to go in and speak back to them. That is where so many people mess up at.
– Using Instagram and Snapchat to show the human side of pastors who have normally appeared to be untouchable and this helps people get to know them outside of just being their pastor.
– Consistent Imagery: having a consistent stream of photos and just regular videos is always a great thing. Also these photos can’t be your regular pulpit photos, these need to be photos of the pastor out talking to people, interacting with people after church, etc.
I wrote this list to say that pastors need to be where the people at and engage them on these platforms the way normal people interact. That is the key to it all. If you as a pastor are doing these things and being consistent about it, you will see your congregation grow. Don’t forget you have to be good at what you do, btw (please don’t forget that).