Sunday, 22 April 2012

Just get started!

One of the benefits of social media tools such as Facebook, Twitter, etc. is that they're a great way to build relationships. You've probably heard that more than a few times. But you might be a little unclear about how exactly this works for churches. Because surely the goal isn't simply to have relationships, right? It's to reach people with a message. So what is it that social media does? The relationships are a vehicle for your message to get through. Think of it like this. If you stood out on the street and proclaimed your message, it might get through to some people. But most people would ignore it. But if those same people were to get your message from a friend or relative-- someone they already trust--your message stands a much better chance of getting their attention. So, (1) Relationships you build online afford you the opportunity to have your message spread from person to person along the lines of these relationships (with no extra effort on your part!), and (2) Just like in the physical world, trust is built up through relationships and when there is trust, the barriers and the skepticism come down people become more open to hearing what you have to say and will begin a dialog with you, leading to questions and further opportunities to share your most-important message. Because of these reasons, social media can be powerfully effective at outreach for churches.

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