Church Web Strategy – Part 5

OK, so this is the final installment in our Church Web Strategy Series for now. Obviously, with the fast paced advancement of technology, in a year of two this will need to be appended but these 5 posts are intended to be a good primer to get you started. If you’d like to view them all together you can do that here. These are some lessons we’ve learned regarding using social media over the last few years. I thought they might be helpful to you as you begin to utilize these tools to engage other people.

  1. As you begin engaging in social media, you ought to place one or two specific people as the moderators and curators for this part of your web presence. Don’t let your entire staff have access to these accounts. Let just a few control that area and have a process in place for submitting possible updates from different areas. Those in charge can help moderate groups on Facebook, send out approved messages to the entire congregation, and this will help keep everything united in terms of communication strategy.
  2. Check your hashtags. They link to other posts that you cannot control, make sure they don’t link to bad posts. We’ve learned this the hard way.
  3. If you use an iPhone, be very aware of autocorrect. You can imagine the stories.
  4. I find it’s best to not tie twitter and Facebook together, but rather to utilize a service that can post to multiple networks at once. Hootsuite is a great choice. Also, it’s a good idea to customize the message based on the media. ie. Facebook allows for longer posts than twitter, so utilize it. Put an actionable link in both to the actual announcement on your site, and customize the Facebook message to look as thought it’s intended for Facebook and the twitter message to look intended for twitter, unless it’s simply short enough to go on both naturally.
  5. Using Hootsuite or another tool that autoschedules updates is a great idea, then you can put several events and reminders in at once, and not have it continually monopolizing your time.

So what about you? Have you learned any fun lessons from utilizing social media? What are they?