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Marketing Your Church Episcopal Diocese of Atlanta Office of Communications
Review Your Church• Church of the Heavenly Secret, located in beautiful downtown Anywhere, USA• Currently has 72 members, 40 regularly attend• Average age is 62• Website needs work, communications (internal and external) are poor• Active and engaged vestry• Ready to invite and accept new members and change
Review Your Market• The real estate commission is showing an increase in sales in single family homes near the church.• The census reports an increase in young married couples in the area.• A recent survey by the local seminary showed that what most people are looking for is an opportunity for spiritual growth.
Review Your Competition• What are other churches in the area doing• A mega church 2 miles down the road packs them in every Sunday.• The service most attended by young couples is the 8:30 or 9 a.m. time slot.• Weekday activities increase Sunday attendance
Set Goal and Objectives• Goal: Grow the Church• Objectives: – Increase the number at the 9 a.m. Sunday service by 40 percent – Target young couples, with and without children – Increase the attendance at adult education by 35 percent – Convert 15 percent of visitors to members
Strategies• Create an impression in the community as being the most welcoming, family-friendly church• Develop signature events and programs that are known outside church membership• Become a community resource for meetings
Tactics• Station greeters at the doors• Have multiple Sunday options for children• Use bulletins to explain Episcopal liturgical practices and promote Christian educational opportunities• Create a robust, interactive, adult education program• Schedule priest(s), vestry in Coffee Hour for conversations
Marketing Vehicles• Internal Communications• Advertising• Public Relations• Direct Marketing• Website• Social Media
Internal Communications• Drive everyone to your website• Knowledge is powerful• Create a firm information foundation when everyone is on the same page• Empower your membership with information• Use e-newsletters, they are efficient and cost- effective• Don’t abandon print
Advertising• Online is the best value for reaching your target audience: Google Adwords, Facebook, Yahoo• Get on the elists: Yellowpages.com, patch.com, superpages.com, churchangel.com, your local Convention & Visitor Bureau• All advertising roads should lead to your website• Print ads are for special services, programs, events, listings in the religion section
Public Relations• Compile a media contact list• Take a reporter/editor to lunch• Send accurate, brief releases that appeal to their audience• More (releases) are not better• Press release template available
Direct Marketing• Targeted• Flexible• Tangible• Measurable• Cost-Effective
Website• Most effective way to attract visitors• Does not have to be expensive or complicated• Must have a dedicated content manager• Post the content your audience wants, not what you or your staff wants• Use the Diocese web template or wordpress.com or blogger.com
Social Media• The new “word of mouth”• Recruit social media ambassadors• Blogs, Facebook, Twitter• Think of it as your virtual “coffee hour”• Use social medial to tell stories with photos and videos that give real, tangible insight to your Church
Action Plan• Budget• Recruit volunteers• Make specific assignments• Create a schedule• Identify benchmarks
Evaluation• Use web tracking - Google Analytics• Track newcomer Conversion Data• Track member retention rate• Conduct Surveys