– The Size of My Church is 37 x Larger Than We Assume

March 12, 2012 at 12:26 pm | Posted in Online Ministry | 5 Comments

What really is the size of our congregation?

Social Media Ministry, a 2.5 Year Review

Here is a presentation I made to the professional staff and stewardship committee recently.

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  1. How much curation does this site take? That is, how much time does someone need to spend encouraging people to blog, finding and promoting useful posts, creating groups, etc.

    • We have one church staffer, who as part of her other duties, updates the photo in the large box on the main page – “the Highlights” box and writes captions and some text. She also follows a template and posts the sermon. If we audio recorded the sermon, she’ll receive the mp3 from a church member who recorded it and then post it. She spends no more than 2 hours a week doing this. She works about 30 hours a week. A team of member volunteer photographers rotates on Sundays and provides the photos for the highlights box.

      That’s it. Members of the church provide the other content whenever they wish. Occasionally, a new page for a special event or new major program will be made. But we have template for that and it’s easy. I monitor all video and photo submissions. I get those on my mobile phone and can accept or deny. I probably spend no more than 5 mins a week doing that. I am aware of all blog submissions when they are posted. I’ll look at them on my phone or online and “feature” them to appear in the right column of the home page if they meet the criteria for featuring. I probably spend no more than 10 mins a week doing this. So 15 mins a week from me. And about 1 hour a week.

      We spend a lot of time in our first 6 months, hand holding and experimenting. At that time, we spent probably 15 hours a week — the part-time staffer and I — getting everything going with work we uploaded to the site. IN the first 6 months, I also spend about 50 hours total training the congregation from Sept. 2009 to xmas 2009.

    • People read members blogs and get motivation that way. We do not actively preach blogging. Members are inspired by other members. The technology is such that when members blog, or a new video is submitted, or photos, etc., we get an automated message that tells us. Then it’s only a matter of looking at the content and clicking once to feature it on the home page. On average, less than 15 mins a week is devoted to this. And included in that time is clicking the “f” button to share the content to our church facebook page. The entire point of choosing a platform that is rich with publishing tools and other automated publish-once distribute to many is to make it easy and to save time. The most time ever spent on this site was when we first developed it. And that’s how it should be. Proper planning and execution at launch sets the stage for an extensible, flexible, easy-to-use, time saving operation. It saves a lot of money in the long run and also positions a congregation to exponentially increase its ministry very easily. Re: Creating groups — people do that on their own. Sometimes folks have questions about the access and entitlement controls they must make decisions on when they are creators of a group. This means the questions are “should I make the group public, private..how do I do this? etc…” The way we address help questions of this nature is twofold: Answer the question through the site’s internal private message system (not email) with easy, brief instructions. They are reinforced by video tutorials I created two years ago. We teach a person to fish once, and off they go. In the beginning a few people needed a lot of hand holding (lay leaders with groups) . But now, members help members as well through online support forums that are also private on the site.

  2. Reblogged this on Ironicschmoozer’s Weblog and commented:
    If you find this relevant to us, please give a comment to my weblog. –Pastor C.

    • Tx for the reblog!


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