Steve Fogg: I love seeing churches use social media effectively. Many have their wall as the first page you see which I don’t quite understand given the capabilities of Facebook pages. A small number of churches seem to be creating custom landing pages which I REALLY like. (I recently wrote a step by step guide about how you can create your own custom Facebook page).
I could type of hours on why I love each one of these pages. I particularly love the use of video and how they drive you to the church’s website. Here are the five pages that I really like in no particular order:
Roar: Today I’m excited to highlight 12Stone Church, the #1 fastest growing church in America in 2010. In 2011, “Outreach Magazine’s” annual Outreach 100 survey stated 12Stone as the #1 fastest growing church in Georgia, and they are still going strong today. With such growth and opportunity, a strong online media presence is greatly needed! That is why Matt Hayes, Online Campus Pastor of 12Stone, works very hard to keep 12Stone afloat online. Through doing church online, 12Stone can help people across the world find community and experience the love of Christ.
Currently, 12Stone utilizes Twitter and Facebook as it’s two main reaches of social media. “We do a great job in terms of getting information and content out to our people,” says Matt, “but there’s SO much more we could do.”
While it seems there is always more to be explored and utilized in social media, 12Stone is doing a pretty spectacular job. Take their online campus, 12Stone Online, which integrates Facebook with their platform. This integration is a game changer as far as church websites go, taking one step further to rally everyone under one roof. Not only can visitors easily navigate the site, but Facebook integration allows them to see real people who are involved at 12Stone.
Knox News: Walking into church at The Point, people take out their cell phones instead of making sure they are turned off and put away.
They’re even encouraged to text during the service, a big faux pas in most churches.
Matt Peeples, pastor at The Point, said people text questions throughout the service to his iPhone about the day’s sermon, faith or life, and he spends the last 10 minutes answering them.
“They text about anything and everything,” Peeples said. “A lot of people stick with what we’re talking about, if something isn’t crystal clear.”
Even as people leave church at The Point, which is held Sundays at Regal Cinemas at West Town Mall, they might continue to be on their phone interacting with The Point’s iPhone and iPad app.
Communication between religious organizations and their followers has blossomed on social media. Many churches have turned to social networks to increase their outreach to spread their teachings.
Buzzplant, a Christian-based digital advertising agency, surveyed churches to see how they’re using social media within their organization. More than 30% of churches surveyed said they update Facebook each day, while close to 15% said they never use the network.
Christianity Today: A recent survey suggests that white evangelical Protestants are “significantly more likely than other major religious groups to use technology for religious purposes.” The Public Religion Research Institute (PRRI) study also suggests that few Americans use social media to interact with faith communities online, though critics say the survey does not accurately measureonline religiosity. Case in point: evangelical dominance of Twitter engagement.
According to PRRI, about 20 percent of white evangelicals have noted their church attendance on Facebook or other social networks, compared to 6 percent of white mainline Protestants and 2 percent of Catholics. In addition, 25 percent of white evangelicals said they’ve downloaded a sermon online or a podcast compared to less than 10 percent of white mainline Protestants.
Reform Judaism Mag: Congregations are about relationships, which means they need to be where the people are. And these days, people are on social media. In 2011, approximately 169 million people in the U.S. and Canada used Facebook monthly (Facebook statistic), and more than half of users are engaging with the platform at least daily (Pew Internet and American Life Study).
Recognizing the power of social media, many congregations have launched Facebook pages and developed their voices on Twitter—some to great success, others meandering, and still others struggling to wrap their heads around these new tools.
What about your temple? How canyour congregation use social media effectively to engage members and potential members?