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