Tuesday, April 21, 2015
Expert Advice || Ideas for Posting on Facebook
Just the other day I was talking with my friend about social media. That's right, we were having a conversation IRL about the digital space we all know and love. See, after graduation, he's going to
take on the role as the director of media at a church and one of his roles will be running social media for the church. We began our chat talking about what an 8-hour work day would look like for a social media manager, but then he quickly changed the subject asking, "what would you even post?" That was a great question, and because I had just recently been reading Social Media for Social Good, I knew exactly how to respond.
In the book, author Heather Mansfield lists 5 examples for posting on Facebook. Here are my takes on it, relating specifically to the church.
1) Success Stories
Shall I put this in "Christianese"? TESTIMONIES! Share simple quips from members of your church about how they came to the Lord & why they choose to attend your church. As Mansfield says, this is a guaranteed liking machine, keep it short and positive.
The simplest way to grab people's attention is through a photo. Even Christians can be a little narcissistic, so once you post some photos from the church picnic from the weekend, you'll have your congregation searching for themselves in each one. Not only will these photos get a lot of shares, but they'll also tell a story for the people seeing them - whether that's in the form of a memory to a member of the church or a story of love and acceptance to someone visiting your page for the first time.
Videos are a great way to expand your reach online. Set up a time to film your pastor's newest sermon series in the form of a few devotions. Edit them well, and throw them online. This, of course, is just one idea. You could have a series of testimonies, highlights from events like Easter/Christmas specials, or whatever. The possibilities are endless!
4) Breaking News
For the church specifically, this example is probably the trickiest, but it's not impossible (because nothing's impossible with God, right? Lol. I got jokes!). Anyways, the news can be heartbreaking, so it's important that you thoroughly read through any articles that you link to in association with the church. It is incredibly easy to offend, so be extra careful to avoid biased voices in the news or anything that makes a topic more negative than it already is. The goal is not to alarm people, it's to inform them & let them know that the church will be there in any time of distress.
5) Calls to Action
This can relate well with breaking news. Think about the earthquake that hit Haiti a few years back. If the church is on Facebook, they can post a link to the news article about the event AND a link to an organization like Convoy of Hope so that they can donate to the relief fund. But I also like to think of this beyond just giving. Your church's congregation gives weekly, and most members really don't want to be bombarded with more requests for donations, but not all donations are monetary. You could call them to volunteer at the next outreach in the community or for working in the nursery on Sunday mornings.
Really, the possibilities are endless for social content pertaining to churches, you just have to think a little harder and be fully aware of the messages you're conveying to the audience(s). With all that said, to any content creators for churches out there, I wish you good luck!