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Social Media & Churches: Stuck In Tactical

Facebook page? Check.

Twitter account? Check.

Doing more than posting status updates or re-tweeting the pastor? Uhhhhmm…

Those are all good actions and activities, but as checklists go, they’re simply tactical. That’s motion without progress; or, if there is progress, how can you know if it’s in the right direction or getting the right results?

The 30/50/20 Rule I outlined for pastors in my previous post is partially tactical, but it’s built around the idea that pastors will start to see value (ROtI – return on their time investment, which is minimal) through conversations. However, to fully take advantage of Social Media is to see beyond the actions and tasks and engage the individuals using these near real-time technologies.

7 Crucial Elements of Social Media ROI for Churches

I will briefly touch on these, as it’s too much information to put into a single blog post.

1) Know How Social Media Integrates the Vision of Your Church

2) Decide What’s Measureable – and What’s Not

3) Define ROM (Return On Ministry)

4) Which Metrics Matter?

5) Empower Every Ministry with Tools & Training

6) Drive People to Decisions

7) Share Success Stories

Having a strategy for your church’s social media efforts goes beyond the tactical and produces a plan to do something with the opportunity. Deciding to measure the return on investment (mostly, time, since churches are not selling product or service) will take time, effort and above all, consistency. However, the results can be very impressive when a strategy is employed.

Learning from the business world helps give context to this kind of dedication, consistency and effort. The folks over at MarketingSherpa polled 3,342 consumer and B2B (Business-to-Business) marketers, giving us valuable insights about how these firms are using social media to engage audience, build brand, generate leads and drive sales. Based on the survey results, the overall average ROI reported by those who are measuring it is 95 percent. One-quarter said they have achieved 100 percent ROI. Higher percentages were reported, too. Twelve percent said they have achieved 200 percent ROI; two percent reported 1,000 percent ROI.

While local churches aren’t looking to generate sales, they are interested in connecting with their communities (loosely translated as “leads” in the business world). The principle here is the point: a consistent social media strategy will yield results.

How is your church approaching social media? With a more tactical or strategic mindset? What have been your success stories and learnings?