How To Use Social Media For Your Ministry


Drew Small

8 minutes to read

Introduction

Social Media is not just an incredible tool to reach your congregation but also to reach people who you couldn’t effectively connect with any other way. In Acts chapter 1, verse 8 “…and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” Nowadays – to the ends of the earth is a lot easier to get to than ever before. At the time this article is published, 56.1% of the global population has internet access, and 45% are active social media users. If we’re going to walk out our sacred call to be a light to the world it might be helpful to have a social media presence. In this article, we’re going to outline some best practices, and give you a sample schedule to take some of the guess work out of this whole thing. Hopefully, by the end of this you will be equipped with some tips and tools to not only be more effective with your social media posting, but also more efficient with the time spent.  

In this article we’ll cover:  

  • What is a Social Media Algorithm 
  • Best Practices for an effective Social Media strategy for your ministry 
  • Sample Social Media Schedule  
Worship Together Kids All-Access Membership

Need Some Encorage-mint?

Worship Together Kids is an unbe-leaf-able way to get all the right resources that will help the kids in your ministry grow with God. Start a free two-week trial today and lettuce show you what it's like to have everything you need to lead your kids to worship. We promise, thistle be the best thing ever!

Plant Me In A Two-Week Free Trial

What Is "The Algorithm" And Why Does It Matter?

Some of you might not know what I’m referring to when I say, “social media algorithm” and that’s okay! If you’re in that camp, you’re in good company. I know a lot of people use this term in conversation – but here is what it means in as simple as terms as possible. And while the following definition will be a gross oversimplification, it’s important that you understand what it is and to absorb it at some level so that as you approach social media for your ministry you can navigate with confidence.  

To put it as simply as possible, the algorithm is like a recipe tha contains a series of “if this happens, then that happens” priorities and criteria to rank, organize, and share content with the right people at the right time.  

Each Social Media platform has their own set of priorities and criteria but possibly the two most important things to keep in mind are:  

• Make it engaging – meaning does it catch the eye as someone scrolls by, and does the caption invite someone to do something like comment, like, share, etc. 

• Make it consistent – meaning are you posting things that look, feel, and sound congruent with a general theme or mood as well as regularly posting on your page or profile. Additionally, if you’re posting regularly it’s worth to post at about the same time every time you do.  

Rather than getting into the nitty gritty of every platform we’ll stick to the two most popular – Twitter, Facebook & In&tagram. And to make it even simpler I’m going to sum up what each platform is looking for at a broad level.  


Twitter  

Twitter is a great way to quickly toss out information in bite sized chunks. There are 5 factors that they consider when assessing an account:  

  • User credibility: you will have a much better chance of getting your followers to see your tweets if you have a credible looking account, user name, website, avatar, and banner should all match and be easily recognized by visitors. If they see your twitter profile and head to your website, do these things seem connected?  
  • Native content: Things that you make specifically for Twitter and that don’t link to outside websites are promoted more. 
  • Recency: The more recently the tweet was posted the more likely you are to be served with it. 
  • Time spent: If you spend a lot of time looking at a profile or particular person’s tweets, Twitter will assume you want to see this more and will save you the trouble of navigating to their profile and serve you the tweets in your news feed right away. 
  • Engagement: Similar to time spent, the more you like, comment, retweet, or generally interact with someone on twitter the more you will see their content.  


Facebook  

Facebook’s current algorithmic mandate is to promote something they refer to as “meaningful social interactions.” Also known as – they want people to talk to each other! So things like:  

  • Content that gets a lot of comment, likes, replies, and shares. 
  • Live video. 
  • Content published by users who have a strong history of frequent activity and strong engagement. However Facebook will penalize accounts using clickbait phrases such as “like, comment, and share”. They will reward you however for things like writing long-form comments and posting native content. 
  • Links being shared by messenger between users. 
  • Content that is published and interacted with by ‘credible users’  


Instagram  

While Facebook owns Instagram and their behind the scenes infrastructure is similar the algorithm is a bit different between these platforms. It’s true that Facebook prioritizes “meaningful social interactions,” Instagram absorbs this and takes it to a new level.  

  • Relationship: The more you engage with an account (liking, commenting, getting tagged in photos, direct messaging, etc.) the more Instagram assumes there is a meaningful social relationship and will deliver you more of that users posts. 
  • Interest: Instagram will do it’s best to predict how interested you will be in a post based upon your past user activity in the app such as what kinds of photos you look at (even if you don’t like and comment), what you’ve searched for, what you share, like, etc. 
  • Recency: When you first open your app you’re likely to see things that have been posted within the last few hours before being shown older posts that they think you should see. 
  • Following: The more people you follow, the less posts you will be able to see from each individual account.
  • Frequency: When you first start browsing your app you will tend to see the best content that has been posted since the last time you logged in – no matter how long it’s been.  

OK great – now that we’re up to speed on the basics, how to we use them to build up the Kingdom? Be sure to tag relevant people such as leaders, your church, or similar. Always be encouraging – your social media posts should always edify, encourage, and comfort the reader no matter what. And lastly, stick to a schedule! If you create a social media schedule it greatly alleviates the pressure of being online all the time – that's not healthy, and we definitely don't recommend that. Keep reading to catch our social media sample schedule to help avoid this!

PRO-TIP

Posting at the same time every week teaches followers and users what to expect. Even if you don't implicitly state what your regular postin is, the act of always posting Tuesday's at 10a (for example) will help them learn to look for you online and expect important information regularly from you.

A Sample Social Media Schedule

Each series we put out comes with an awesome pack of social graphics that are ready-to-use, this should take a good chunk of the work off your plate and free you up to post on a regular basis ensuring you’re reaching your audience and beyond on a regular basis with important information about what’s happening, as well as uplifting and encouraging content that draws the readers towards Christ. I’m going to start on Wednesday and move my way through the week to keep things simple. 

  •  Wednesday (before the first Sunday you use the content): Post the “Series Graphic” for this series. Announce the upcoming series theme and mention how excited you are to see what God is going to do. This is going to create a great opportunity for excitement and anticipations for the week ahead, while also giving parents a heads up what the new topics are you’ll be covering with their kids is. You can also include in the caption of this posts any news you might have about your services ahead, check-in time, well child policy, reminders for parents to bring extra diapers, invitations to participate in food drives etc. 
  • Friday: Post a “Song Graphic” for one of the songs you’ll be leading that weekend and talk about it’s central message, it’s scriptural foundation, and how much you love it or how excited you are to dance and sing along to it with the kids. This will allow parents and kids to get excited about the song that is coming up and you can use this time to add in any updates or announcements your kids and parents might like to know. 
  • Monday/Tuesday (after your Sunday Service): Post the memory verse shortly after your Sunday you teach it. This way you can use this post to invite parents and students to re-engage with the content you taught them Sunday and remind them to do the family reading that accompanies the devotional. As a bonus to encourage engagement on your post you might think about asking them to leave a comment below with a short description of what God showed them in their family reading time. Or encourage people to comment that they read it. As a bonus you can upload your PDF of the weekly devotional to dropbox and link that in your bio using a split-link service like Link Tree so they can download it if they lost or misplaced it.
  • Wednesday's (during a series): Post another social graphic from one of the songs you'll be using and use it to just simply encourage or lift up your audience. Invite the audience to share their favorite lyric from the song, or even a prayer request if they're feelind bold enough! This foster an online community and builds up your audience to know you're available for them and that you care for them.


Simple, right?! If you use these posts every week across all platforms and then pepper in pictures and posts of what’s happening in your unique ministry as you’re able, you’re sure to have a winning social media strategy that informs and invites people to grow with God.  

PRO-TIP

Reminding your kids and parents to engage with the take home weekly devotionals creates an opportunity for parents and kids to build a foundation in the home that is centered on Christ and helps all members of the family grow with God!

That's it!

One last tip, social media doesn’t grow overnight. This is something you should try and stick to for 6-12 months and reassess if it’s working for you, and if it’s right for your ministry. Don’t be discouraged if you don’t have a ton of likes, shares, retweets, and followers overnight. Keep at it and in time, you should see this start to grow.  

If you have any questions about this - send us an email at hello@worshiptogetherkidsallaccess.com and we'd be happy to help!

We've Got You Covered

We really thought of everything - start your free-trial now and see how our All-Access Pass will change your life!