My guess is you found this post today one of two ways social media or you signed up via email to get updates. Even if it was the latter, you probably initially found this site from social or relationship. To me, the two are the same, social is a relationship.
A creative pastor, director, or communications director has one stress that no one else in the church understands, the pressure to produce social media. Yes, I know, it’s easy, post something… that ease of concept ends about the end of day three on the job.
What if you had a few things to help you? After too many years of trying to figure out content, I finally started to study and plan better. The truth is, social media is about planning first, and that is often forgotten.
Here are nine things to remember when you are executing your social media.
** (The punchline of this post – the social map. If you don’t have time to read the rest of this post, click this link to get a sample map and quick instructions)
1. Remember it is a communication tool, not a broadcast tool – Use it to have conversations not to ask people to do things. You need to know how many posts are going to be informative, inspirational, encouraging, and then how many are going to be asking. I like a 3-1 ratio.
2. Know your bandwidth – Create a frequency that works for you and your team if you have one. Be aware of how many times you can post excellent content on each platform. Ideally, you want a minimum of one post a day on each platform, then as you grow, your frequency increases.
Hint: If you are posting more than 6-10 IG stories each Sunday you are going to wear out your audience.
3. Lead people to action – Use hashtags, ask questions, invite people to share and tag, the more you do these type of things, the better. It increases engagement and helps you break the algorithm.
4. Post native – Don’t post on IG and hit the FB button. Take the extra 90 seconds to post natively on each platform if you want to increase your engagement.
5. Use social advertising – Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, and IG Stories are great places to target your audience.
6. Create a content map – A content map helps you know what is going to happen, when, and what type of content you should post. In the sample, I have given you some ideas on content and how to use it. If you don’t have a content map, your frustration is going to kill you. If you are interested in getting a free content map you can get one here.
7. Follow the analytics – Watch how people engage your content. When they like something you do, find ways to replicate that style of post. Use the data that is available to help you be more intentional with your content. Information is not meant to shame you for poor performance, so use it daily to make yourself a rockstar!
8. Don’t be afraid to bulk schedule to save yourself time – Use a social assistant like Hootsuite to help you get ahead! Also, pro users can now upload the CSV file with text, images, and times and you are good to go!
9. Never compare yourself – Don’t compare your work to others. You don’t know the size of the teams each church has, the experience of their organizations or leaders, and what they are trying to accomplish. In this season of life, I get to work with a lot of different types of churches. Some are speed boats, others pontoon boats. Both are fun, neither is wrong, you have to identify your goals and then work towards them intentionally (and secretly, I think the beginning of that is the social map).
Also, most people who attend your church are not following 20 other churches. They follow Will Smith, The Rock, Budweiser, and Home Depot. You get to be the niche that is unique just by being who you are every day!