The secret to effective church promotions is not saying more, but saying less with greater clarity.
When we tell our church or ministry story in a clear, concise and compelling way, people engage. Not only do they engage, but they listen, understand and respond.
This doesn’t happen by accident. You might stumble into it a few times. But the only way to see long term consistent response is with a plan.
Good plans have action steps, a checklist on “steroids” so to speak. I’ve followed a rough one for years but never documented it until recently. I call it the 3 C’s of Communication and I want to share the first one with you.
1) Convey the Details
As simple as it sounds, beginning with a written list of all the details you need to share is huge.
- What is the event
- How do we describe it
- Who is it for
- Where is it held
- How do people participate
- Where do they register
- Is there a cost
- Where do people get more information
- Who is the contact
The temptation is to answer the questions in your head or not bother at all. I encourage you to take the time to write it out and go into as much detail as you need for each step.
When you do, you will often reveal details you’ve forgotten or questions the listener will have. This will help you clarify your message and address potential questions when sharing with your church.
It will also serve as a written reminder of your goals, and a means to share the information with other leaders and volunteers.
Conveying the Details is the first step to consistent success.
2) Connect the Heart
Throughout the New Testament we see Jesus connect with the heart of his listeners. Whether it was one on one, or in a large group he had an amazing ability to get people to listen and respond.
Jesus knew that when a person connects emotionally to what we share they listen differently. Their hearts are open to respond and lasting life change is possible.
With this as our goal, the second part of The 3 C’s of Communication is how to Connect the Heart of your listener to the story you have to tell.
Jesus provided a simple but powerful model for us to use:
• Tell a Story
Jesus was never without a story, and when He spoke people listened. They were short, to the point, and often provided space for dialogue and response.
When you share, find a personal experience, life event or recent news to reinforce the information. Details are necessary, but they seldom are the part people walk away and remember. A story can spark the brain to remember your point long into the future.
• Use Illustrations
Jesus used the things around him as a foundation for what he shared. Landscape, agriculture, economics, if it could point people to God he tied it in. They helped him visually tell a story people could relate to, so they would remember the principle and share it themselves.
As you think of illustrations, consider the community you’re in. What type of imagery will connect with your audience? What type of response will it convey?
Then consider how you might tell it. Verbal story, testimony, interview, video or news clip. It doesn’t have to be flashy, it just has to connect.
• Show Examples of Life Change
Despite Jesus’ requests for people to not share who had helped them, they did. They left to tell friends, relatives and entire communities about how Jesus had changed them.
Why the disobedience? Because a life changed can seldom keep quiet about the difference that was made.
Look for ways to celebrate the changed lives in your midst. Tell the stories, interview the families, share how the Gospel has changed them. It will connect your church to the humanity in others and bring hope to their own situations.
I encourage you to take these “Lessons from Jesus” and find ways to Connect the Heart. As you do, you will see your church grasp the Gospel in fresh ways and respond like never before.
3) Creatively Deliver
The reality is, communicating with your church doesn’t have to be expensive, but it does involve looking for solutions in creative ways. If it seems overwhelming I understand, you are not alone in that feeling.
In Exodus 4:2 God asks Moses, “what’s that in your hand?” and Moses replies he has a staff. Through every objection and question Moses raises, God shows how He has provided the tools needed to accomplish the task.
My question for you is, what’s in your hand? What tools has God already provided and you’ve overlooked until now?
- A technical institute student who needs web design experience
- An english teacher who could write an articulate email
- A college student who lives and breathes social media
- A high school student with a GoPro who loves to shoot and edit video
- A graphic designer with a heart for ministry who can create a flyer for you
Take a few minutes and make a list of what God has placed in your hands to help you communicate more effectively. Spend time developing those relationships and you will be poised to help others connect in deeper ways.