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Benefits of Social Media to the Church

Benefits of Social Media to the Church

Social media is often overlooked by religious institutions simply because it's dominated by secular companies, organizations, and individuals. But social media isn't inherently secular. Instead, it's a neutral myriad of online platforms that foster communication in the digital space. In other words, your church can use social media for good.

CHURCH TECH PODCAST
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TV
Modern Church leader
Category
Church Tech
Publish date
March 11, 2023
Author
Tithe.ly

Benefits of Social Media to the Church

Social media is often overlooked by religious institutions simply because it's dominated by secular companies, organizations, and individuals. But social media isn't inherently secular. Instead, it's a neutral myriad of online platforms that foster communication in the digital space. 

In other words, your church can use social media for good, helping solidify members' commitment, increasing member count, and propelling the church to reach its overall mission. Learn more about the benefits of social media to the church below.

Why It's Important for the Church to Be on Social Media

According to the latest statistics, churches that are on social media can communicate with and reach their members more easily than those that only stick to traditional forms and offline methods. Here are some statistics that demonstrate the importance of social media to the church:

People Spend a Lot of Time Online

On average, every person spends 2.5 hours a day on social media. This means that members who attend Sunday service for 2 hours a week spend 6x more hours on social media than in church. Or, if they spend one hour a week reading the Bible (which is already above average), they spend 12x more hours reading their phones than God's Word.

In other words, social media reaches church members more than any other form of communication. Social media has a massive effect and influence over the hearts and minds of your congregation, simply due to the amount of time your members spend on those platforms.

People Engage on Different Platforms

People aren't just on Facebook the entire 2.5 hours a day – the average person uses 7.5 social media platforms per month. They constantly switch from one platform to another, depending on the mood or content. This means that your church can't just have a website or Facebook page and assume that members regularly check its content. 

You have to be where the people are to make a difference. If you're rethinking your social media strategy and communication plans, consider stretching your reach across multiple social media platforms to have an online presence. 

Consider the eight most popular social media platforms

  • Facebook
  • Instagram
  • YouTube
  • Twitter
  • TikTok
  • Snapchat
  • LinkedIn
  • Pinterest

The more platforms you’re on, the farther your reach – and the more influence you'll have over your members. This could potentially attract new members to your congregation as well.

More People Are Online Today Than Ever Before

If you think social media has reached its peak number of users, think again – users increased by over 5% in the last year alone, where 227 million individuals who weren’t social media users before have joined the club.

The growth shows no slowing down, as well. More than half of the population worldwide are now social media users – it's only a matter of time before almost every single person on the planet is online.

Even if Facebook reported that its daily active users decreased for the first time, people aren't leaving social media entirely. While specific platforms might change in popularity, it doesn't discount the fact that the medium is here to stay. Given its continuous momentum, churches should treat social media today as the dominant communication method.

8 Benefits of Social Media to the Church

Now that you know just how important social media is to churches, let's take a look at some of the advantages of using it. If you're still not convinced by the statistics listed above, you'll undoubtedly be encouraged by these benefits of social media in the church:

1. Communicate With Members in Real Time

In the past, churches had to wait until their next service or Bible study to share any announcements or updates. But, with social media, you can communicate with your members as soon as something happens. This is perfect for disseminating time-sensitive information or promoting last-minute church events. You can also use social media to converse with your members outside of church hours.

2. Reach Out to Inactive Members

It's not uncommon for church members to become inactive over time due to life circumstances such as work, school, or family commitments. But, with social media, you can easily reach out to these individuals and invite them back to church. By staying in touch with inactive members, you can help them feel like they're still a part of the church community and make it easier for them to return when they have more time.

3. Share Your Church's Story with the World

Your church has many stories to share, from testimonies of how your members’ lives have changed to accounts of how your church has helped the community. With social media, you can share these stories with a broader audience and show the world what your church is all about. This is an excellent way to get more support from the existing church members, attract new members, and gain more momentum to reach your church's mission and vision.

4. Reach Out to Potential New Members

The more platforms your church is on, the more likely you are to reach individuals who don't attend service. People consume content differently – for example, some might prefer reading blogs over watching YouTube videos. So, having a presence on different social media platforms will increase your chances of reaching potential new members who would otherwise not have heard of you.

5. Engage With Members Outside of Service

Churches can use social media to start conversations, answer questions, spread timely news, and give advice – without members having to step foot into the church. While nothing can replace in-person connection, online interaction can build relationships and foster a sense of community among members who live far away or have trouble attending service regularly.

6. Increase Transparency and Build Trust

Gone are the days when churches could get away with being secretive about their movements. With social media, anything and everything is out in the open for everyone to see. 

While this increased transparency might seem daunting at first, it builds trust between the church and its members. When members know what's happening behind the scenes, they are more likely to be supportive and engaged with the church.

7. Encourage Involvement

Social media allows members to participate actively in the church without being physically present. By sharing content, commenting on posts, or just liking updates, members can show their support and feel involved in the church community throughout the entire week – not just on Sundays or Bible study nights.

8. Connect With Younger Generations

Younger generations are digital natives – they grew up with technology and are more comfortable using it than older generations. By being active on social media, churches can naturally connect with younger members and get them involved in the community. Social media is an excellent way to engage with members of all ages, but it's vital for reaching out to younger generations who are online more often.

5 Risks of Being on Social Media

Despite the many benefits of social media for churches, there are also some risks to consider. You can mitigate these dangers by being aware of the possibilities, preparing a response or strategy, and proactively avoiding them altogether. Here are a few of the risks your church could face by being active on social media:

1. Discussions Could Get Heated

When you open up a forum for discussion, you also open up the possibility of arguments and conflict. While it's important to encourage healthy debate, you must be prepared to moderate conversations so they don't get out of hand. Remember, people tend to be harsher and more aggressive when they can't see the person they're arguing with.

2. People Could Say Negative Things About Your Church

With social media, there's always the risk that someone could say something negative about your church – whether true or not. Therefore, it's essential to be prepared for this possibility and plan how you will respond. 

If you respond politely and honestly, in the same way that for-profit companies handle negative reviews about their products, you might increase members' trust. Negative comments aren’t inherently bad, either – when you know your members’ complaints and suggestions, you can use them to improve your church’s service.

3. You Could Inadvertently Share Confidential Information

When sharing updates and stories about your church on social media, it's crucial not to share confidential information accidentally. Sensitive data could include anything from financial details about donors to personal information about members who attend your prayer meetings. 

The more your church grows, the more confidentiality might get overlooked. Your church must figure out alternative ways to protect your member's information. When tithing, for example, you can receive donations via websites instead of through physical envelopes.

4. Your Church Could Get Hacked

If your church's social media accounts are hacked, sensitive information could be leaked or stolen. This possibility is a risk for any organization that uses social media, but churches must be especially aware and cautious since they typically deal with sensitive information. You'll need a trustworthy staff member to handle this risk.

5. Social Media Can Be Addictive

Social media can be addictive and lead to unhealthy habits for some people. If not used in moderation, it can take up too much time and energy that could be better spent elsewhere. 

Encourage participation but not to the point that the online world takes precedence over their offline lives. Use your church’s social media accounts to direct members toward in-person community-building, like Sunday service and Bible studies.

The Church and Social Media: What's Next?

The future of the church and social media is looking bright. As more and more people join social media platforms, churches have the opportunity to reach a wider audience and build deeper relationships with their members. Of course, there might be some bumps along the way, but churches that embrace social media will be well-positioned to succeed in the digital age and beyond.

AUTHOR

Tithely provides the tools you need to engage with your church online, stay connected, increase generosity, and simplify the lives of your staff.

With tools like text and email messaging, custom church apps and websites, church management software, digital giving, and so much more… it’s no wonder why over 37,000 churches in 50 countries trust Tithely to help run their church. 

Benefits of Social Media to the Church

Social media is often overlooked by religious institutions simply because it's dominated by secular companies, organizations, and individuals. But social media isn't inherently secular. Instead, it's a neutral myriad of online platforms that foster communication in the digital space. 

In other words, your church can use social media for good, helping solidify members' commitment, increasing member count, and propelling the church to reach its overall mission. Learn more about the benefits of social media to the church below.

Why It's Important for the Church to Be on Social Media

According to the latest statistics, churches that are on social media can communicate with and reach their members more easily than those that only stick to traditional forms and offline methods. Here are some statistics that demonstrate the importance of social media to the church:

People Spend a Lot of Time Online

On average, every person spends 2.5 hours a day on social media. This means that members who attend Sunday service for 2 hours a week spend 6x more hours on social media than in church. Or, if they spend one hour a week reading the Bible (which is already above average), they spend 12x more hours reading their phones than God's Word.

In other words, social media reaches church members more than any other form of communication. Social media has a massive effect and influence over the hearts and minds of your congregation, simply due to the amount of time your members spend on those platforms.

People Engage on Different Platforms

People aren't just on Facebook the entire 2.5 hours a day – the average person uses 7.5 social media platforms per month. They constantly switch from one platform to another, depending on the mood or content. This means that your church can't just have a website or Facebook page and assume that members regularly check its content. 

You have to be where the people are to make a difference. If you're rethinking your social media strategy and communication plans, consider stretching your reach across multiple social media platforms to have an online presence. 

Consider the eight most popular social media platforms

  • Facebook
  • Instagram
  • YouTube
  • Twitter
  • TikTok
  • Snapchat
  • LinkedIn
  • Pinterest

The more platforms you’re on, the farther your reach – and the more influence you'll have over your members. This could potentially attract new members to your congregation as well.

More People Are Online Today Than Ever Before

If you think social media has reached its peak number of users, think again – users increased by over 5% in the last year alone, where 227 million individuals who weren’t social media users before have joined the club.

The growth shows no slowing down, as well. More than half of the population worldwide are now social media users – it's only a matter of time before almost every single person on the planet is online.

Even if Facebook reported that its daily active users decreased for the first time, people aren't leaving social media entirely. While specific platforms might change in popularity, it doesn't discount the fact that the medium is here to stay. Given its continuous momentum, churches should treat social media today as the dominant communication method.

8 Benefits of Social Media to the Church

Now that you know just how important social media is to churches, let's take a look at some of the advantages of using it. If you're still not convinced by the statistics listed above, you'll undoubtedly be encouraged by these benefits of social media in the church:

1. Communicate With Members in Real Time

In the past, churches had to wait until their next service or Bible study to share any announcements or updates. But, with social media, you can communicate with your members as soon as something happens. This is perfect for disseminating time-sensitive information or promoting last-minute church events. You can also use social media to converse with your members outside of church hours.

2. Reach Out to Inactive Members

It's not uncommon for church members to become inactive over time due to life circumstances such as work, school, or family commitments. But, with social media, you can easily reach out to these individuals and invite them back to church. By staying in touch with inactive members, you can help them feel like they're still a part of the church community and make it easier for them to return when they have more time.

3. Share Your Church's Story with the World

Your church has many stories to share, from testimonies of how your members’ lives have changed to accounts of how your church has helped the community. With social media, you can share these stories with a broader audience and show the world what your church is all about. This is an excellent way to get more support from the existing church members, attract new members, and gain more momentum to reach your church's mission and vision.

4. Reach Out to Potential New Members

The more platforms your church is on, the more likely you are to reach individuals who don't attend service. People consume content differently – for example, some might prefer reading blogs over watching YouTube videos. So, having a presence on different social media platforms will increase your chances of reaching potential new members who would otherwise not have heard of you.

5. Engage With Members Outside of Service

Churches can use social media to start conversations, answer questions, spread timely news, and give advice – without members having to step foot into the church. While nothing can replace in-person connection, online interaction can build relationships and foster a sense of community among members who live far away or have trouble attending service regularly.

6. Increase Transparency and Build Trust

Gone are the days when churches could get away with being secretive about their movements. With social media, anything and everything is out in the open for everyone to see. 

While this increased transparency might seem daunting at first, it builds trust between the church and its members. When members know what's happening behind the scenes, they are more likely to be supportive and engaged with the church.

7. Encourage Involvement

Social media allows members to participate actively in the church without being physically present. By sharing content, commenting on posts, or just liking updates, members can show their support and feel involved in the church community throughout the entire week – not just on Sundays or Bible study nights.

8. Connect With Younger Generations

Younger generations are digital natives – they grew up with technology and are more comfortable using it than older generations. By being active on social media, churches can naturally connect with younger members and get them involved in the community. Social media is an excellent way to engage with members of all ages, but it's vital for reaching out to younger generations who are online more often.

5 Risks of Being on Social Media

Despite the many benefits of social media for churches, there are also some risks to consider. You can mitigate these dangers by being aware of the possibilities, preparing a response or strategy, and proactively avoiding them altogether. Here are a few of the risks your church could face by being active on social media:

1. Discussions Could Get Heated

When you open up a forum for discussion, you also open up the possibility of arguments and conflict. While it's important to encourage healthy debate, you must be prepared to moderate conversations so they don't get out of hand. Remember, people tend to be harsher and more aggressive when they can't see the person they're arguing with.

2. People Could Say Negative Things About Your Church

With social media, there's always the risk that someone could say something negative about your church – whether true or not. Therefore, it's essential to be prepared for this possibility and plan how you will respond. 

If you respond politely and honestly, in the same way that for-profit companies handle negative reviews about their products, you might increase members' trust. Negative comments aren’t inherently bad, either – when you know your members’ complaints and suggestions, you can use them to improve your church’s service.

3. You Could Inadvertently Share Confidential Information

When sharing updates and stories about your church on social media, it's crucial not to share confidential information accidentally. Sensitive data could include anything from financial details about donors to personal information about members who attend your prayer meetings. 

The more your church grows, the more confidentiality might get overlooked. Your church must figure out alternative ways to protect your member's information. When tithing, for example, you can receive donations via websites instead of through physical envelopes.

4. Your Church Could Get Hacked

If your church's social media accounts are hacked, sensitive information could be leaked or stolen. This possibility is a risk for any organization that uses social media, but churches must be especially aware and cautious since they typically deal with sensitive information. You'll need a trustworthy staff member to handle this risk.

5. Social Media Can Be Addictive

Social media can be addictive and lead to unhealthy habits for some people. If not used in moderation, it can take up too much time and energy that could be better spent elsewhere. 

Encourage participation but not to the point that the online world takes precedence over their offline lives. Use your church’s social media accounts to direct members toward in-person community-building, like Sunday service and Bible studies.

The Church and Social Media: What's Next?

The future of the church and social media is looking bright. As more and more people join social media platforms, churches have the opportunity to reach a wider audience and build deeper relationships with their members. Of course, there might be some bumps along the way, but churches that embrace social media will be well-positioned to succeed in the digital age and beyond.

podcast transcript

(Scroll for more)
AUTHOR

Tithely provides the tools you need to engage with your church online, stay connected, increase generosity, and simplify the lives of your staff.

With tools like text and email messaging, custom church apps and websites, church management software, digital giving, and so much more… it’s no wonder why over 37,000 churches in 50 countries trust Tithely to help run their church. 

Benefits of Social Media to the Church

Social media is often overlooked by religious institutions simply because it's dominated by secular companies, organizations, and individuals. But social media isn't inherently secular. Instead, it's a neutral myriad of online platforms that foster communication in the digital space. 

In other words, your church can use social media for good, helping solidify members' commitment, increasing member count, and propelling the church to reach its overall mission. Learn more about the benefits of social media to the church below.

Why It's Important for the Church to Be on Social Media

According to the latest statistics, churches that are on social media can communicate with and reach their members more easily than those that only stick to traditional forms and offline methods. Here are some statistics that demonstrate the importance of social media to the church:

People Spend a Lot of Time Online

On average, every person spends 2.5 hours a day on social media. This means that members who attend Sunday service for 2 hours a week spend 6x more hours on social media than in church. Or, if they spend one hour a week reading the Bible (which is already above average), they spend 12x more hours reading their phones than God's Word.

In other words, social media reaches church members more than any other form of communication. Social media has a massive effect and influence over the hearts and minds of your congregation, simply due to the amount of time your members spend on those platforms.

People Engage on Different Platforms

People aren't just on Facebook the entire 2.5 hours a day – the average person uses 7.5 social media platforms per month. They constantly switch from one platform to another, depending on the mood or content. This means that your church can't just have a website or Facebook page and assume that members regularly check its content. 

You have to be where the people are to make a difference. If you're rethinking your social media strategy and communication plans, consider stretching your reach across multiple social media platforms to have an online presence. 

Consider the eight most popular social media platforms

  • Facebook
  • Instagram
  • YouTube
  • Twitter
  • TikTok
  • Snapchat
  • LinkedIn
  • Pinterest

The more platforms you’re on, the farther your reach – and the more influence you'll have over your members. This could potentially attract new members to your congregation as well.

More People Are Online Today Than Ever Before

If you think social media has reached its peak number of users, think again – users increased by over 5% in the last year alone, where 227 million individuals who weren’t social media users before have joined the club.

The growth shows no slowing down, as well. More than half of the population worldwide are now social media users – it's only a matter of time before almost every single person on the planet is online.

Even if Facebook reported that its daily active users decreased for the first time, people aren't leaving social media entirely. While specific platforms might change in popularity, it doesn't discount the fact that the medium is here to stay. Given its continuous momentum, churches should treat social media today as the dominant communication method.

8 Benefits of Social Media to the Church

Now that you know just how important social media is to churches, let's take a look at some of the advantages of using it. If you're still not convinced by the statistics listed above, you'll undoubtedly be encouraged by these benefits of social media in the church:

1. Communicate With Members in Real Time

In the past, churches had to wait until their next service or Bible study to share any announcements or updates. But, with social media, you can communicate with your members as soon as something happens. This is perfect for disseminating time-sensitive information or promoting last-minute church events. You can also use social media to converse with your members outside of church hours.

2. Reach Out to Inactive Members

It's not uncommon for church members to become inactive over time due to life circumstances such as work, school, or family commitments. But, with social media, you can easily reach out to these individuals and invite them back to church. By staying in touch with inactive members, you can help them feel like they're still a part of the church community and make it easier for them to return when they have more time.

3. Share Your Church's Story with the World

Your church has many stories to share, from testimonies of how your members’ lives have changed to accounts of how your church has helped the community. With social media, you can share these stories with a broader audience and show the world what your church is all about. This is an excellent way to get more support from the existing church members, attract new members, and gain more momentum to reach your church's mission and vision.

4. Reach Out to Potential New Members

The more platforms your church is on, the more likely you are to reach individuals who don't attend service. People consume content differently – for example, some might prefer reading blogs over watching YouTube videos. So, having a presence on different social media platforms will increase your chances of reaching potential new members who would otherwise not have heard of you.

5. Engage With Members Outside of Service

Churches can use social media to start conversations, answer questions, spread timely news, and give advice – without members having to step foot into the church. While nothing can replace in-person connection, online interaction can build relationships and foster a sense of community among members who live far away or have trouble attending service regularly.

6. Increase Transparency and Build Trust

Gone are the days when churches could get away with being secretive about their movements. With social media, anything and everything is out in the open for everyone to see. 

While this increased transparency might seem daunting at first, it builds trust between the church and its members. When members know what's happening behind the scenes, they are more likely to be supportive and engaged with the church.

7. Encourage Involvement

Social media allows members to participate actively in the church without being physically present. By sharing content, commenting on posts, or just liking updates, members can show their support and feel involved in the church community throughout the entire week – not just on Sundays or Bible study nights.

8. Connect With Younger Generations

Younger generations are digital natives – they grew up with technology and are more comfortable using it than older generations. By being active on social media, churches can naturally connect with younger members and get them involved in the community. Social media is an excellent way to engage with members of all ages, but it's vital for reaching out to younger generations who are online more often.

5 Risks of Being on Social Media

Despite the many benefits of social media for churches, there are also some risks to consider. You can mitigate these dangers by being aware of the possibilities, preparing a response or strategy, and proactively avoiding them altogether. Here are a few of the risks your church could face by being active on social media:

1. Discussions Could Get Heated

When you open up a forum for discussion, you also open up the possibility of arguments and conflict. While it's important to encourage healthy debate, you must be prepared to moderate conversations so they don't get out of hand. Remember, people tend to be harsher and more aggressive when they can't see the person they're arguing with.

2. People Could Say Negative Things About Your Church

With social media, there's always the risk that someone could say something negative about your church – whether true or not. Therefore, it's essential to be prepared for this possibility and plan how you will respond. 

If you respond politely and honestly, in the same way that for-profit companies handle negative reviews about their products, you might increase members' trust. Negative comments aren’t inherently bad, either – when you know your members’ complaints and suggestions, you can use them to improve your church’s service.

3. You Could Inadvertently Share Confidential Information

When sharing updates and stories about your church on social media, it's crucial not to share confidential information accidentally. Sensitive data could include anything from financial details about donors to personal information about members who attend your prayer meetings. 

The more your church grows, the more confidentiality might get overlooked. Your church must figure out alternative ways to protect your member's information. When tithing, for example, you can receive donations via websites instead of through physical envelopes.

4. Your Church Could Get Hacked

If your church's social media accounts are hacked, sensitive information could be leaked or stolen. This possibility is a risk for any organization that uses social media, but churches must be especially aware and cautious since they typically deal with sensitive information. You'll need a trustworthy staff member to handle this risk.

5. Social Media Can Be Addictive

Social media can be addictive and lead to unhealthy habits for some people. If not used in moderation, it can take up too much time and energy that could be better spent elsewhere. 

Encourage participation but not to the point that the online world takes precedence over their offline lives. Use your church’s social media accounts to direct members toward in-person community-building, like Sunday service and Bible studies.

The Church and Social Media: What's Next?

The future of the church and social media is looking bright. As more and more people join social media platforms, churches have the opportunity to reach a wider audience and build deeper relationships with their members. Of course, there might be some bumps along the way, but churches that embrace social media will be well-positioned to succeed in the digital age and beyond.

VIDEO transcript

(Scroll for more)

Benefits of Social Media to the Church

Social media is often overlooked by religious institutions simply because it's dominated by secular companies, organizations, and individuals. But social media isn't inherently secular. Instead, it's a neutral myriad of online platforms that foster communication in the digital space. 

In other words, your church can use social media for good, helping solidify members' commitment, increasing member count, and propelling the church to reach its overall mission. Learn more about the benefits of social media to the church below.

Why It's Important for the Church to Be on Social Media

According to the latest statistics, churches that are on social media can communicate with and reach their members more easily than those that only stick to traditional forms and offline methods. Here are some statistics that demonstrate the importance of social media to the church:

People Spend a Lot of Time Online

On average, every person spends 2.5 hours a day on social media. This means that members who attend Sunday service for 2 hours a week spend 6x more hours on social media than in church. Or, if they spend one hour a week reading the Bible (which is already above average), they spend 12x more hours reading their phones than God's Word.

In other words, social media reaches church members more than any other form of communication. Social media has a massive effect and influence over the hearts and minds of your congregation, simply due to the amount of time your members spend on those platforms.

People Engage on Different Platforms

People aren't just on Facebook the entire 2.5 hours a day – the average person uses 7.5 social media platforms per month. They constantly switch from one platform to another, depending on the mood or content. This means that your church can't just have a website or Facebook page and assume that members regularly check its content. 

You have to be where the people are to make a difference. If you're rethinking your social media strategy and communication plans, consider stretching your reach across multiple social media platforms to have an online presence. 

Consider the eight most popular social media platforms

  • Facebook
  • Instagram
  • YouTube
  • Twitter
  • TikTok
  • Snapchat
  • LinkedIn
  • Pinterest

The more platforms you’re on, the farther your reach – and the more influence you'll have over your members. This could potentially attract new members to your congregation as well.

More People Are Online Today Than Ever Before

If you think social media has reached its peak number of users, think again – users increased by over 5% in the last year alone, where 227 million individuals who weren’t social media users before have joined the club.

The growth shows no slowing down, as well. More than half of the population worldwide are now social media users – it's only a matter of time before almost every single person on the planet is online.

Even if Facebook reported that its daily active users decreased for the first time, people aren't leaving social media entirely. While specific platforms might change in popularity, it doesn't discount the fact that the medium is here to stay. Given its continuous momentum, churches should treat social media today as the dominant communication method.

8 Benefits of Social Media to the Church

Now that you know just how important social media is to churches, let's take a look at some of the advantages of using it. If you're still not convinced by the statistics listed above, you'll undoubtedly be encouraged by these benefits of social media in the church:

1. Communicate With Members in Real Time

In the past, churches had to wait until their next service or Bible study to share any announcements or updates. But, with social media, you can communicate with your members as soon as something happens. This is perfect for disseminating time-sensitive information or promoting last-minute church events. You can also use social media to converse with your members outside of church hours.

2. Reach Out to Inactive Members

It's not uncommon for church members to become inactive over time due to life circumstances such as work, school, or family commitments. But, with social media, you can easily reach out to these individuals and invite them back to church. By staying in touch with inactive members, you can help them feel like they're still a part of the church community and make it easier for them to return when they have more time.

3. Share Your Church's Story with the World

Your church has many stories to share, from testimonies of how your members’ lives have changed to accounts of how your church has helped the community. With social media, you can share these stories with a broader audience and show the world what your church is all about. This is an excellent way to get more support from the existing church members, attract new members, and gain more momentum to reach your church's mission and vision.

4. Reach Out to Potential New Members

The more platforms your church is on, the more likely you are to reach individuals who don't attend service. People consume content differently – for example, some might prefer reading blogs over watching YouTube videos. So, having a presence on different social media platforms will increase your chances of reaching potential new members who would otherwise not have heard of you.

5. Engage With Members Outside of Service

Churches can use social media to start conversations, answer questions, spread timely news, and give advice – without members having to step foot into the church. While nothing can replace in-person connection, online interaction can build relationships and foster a sense of community among members who live far away or have trouble attending service regularly.

6. Increase Transparency and Build Trust

Gone are the days when churches could get away with being secretive about their movements. With social media, anything and everything is out in the open for everyone to see. 

While this increased transparency might seem daunting at first, it builds trust between the church and its members. When members know what's happening behind the scenes, they are more likely to be supportive and engaged with the church.

7. Encourage Involvement

Social media allows members to participate actively in the church without being physically present. By sharing content, commenting on posts, or just liking updates, members can show their support and feel involved in the church community throughout the entire week – not just on Sundays or Bible study nights.

8. Connect With Younger Generations

Younger generations are digital natives – they grew up with technology and are more comfortable using it than older generations. By being active on social media, churches can naturally connect with younger members and get them involved in the community. Social media is an excellent way to engage with members of all ages, but it's vital for reaching out to younger generations who are online more often.

5 Risks of Being on Social Media

Despite the many benefits of social media for churches, there are also some risks to consider. You can mitigate these dangers by being aware of the possibilities, preparing a response or strategy, and proactively avoiding them altogether. Here are a few of the risks your church could face by being active on social media:

1. Discussions Could Get Heated

When you open up a forum for discussion, you also open up the possibility of arguments and conflict. While it's important to encourage healthy debate, you must be prepared to moderate conversations so they don't get out of hand. Remember, people tend to be harsher and more aggressive when they can't see the person they're arguing with.

2. People Could Say Negative Things About Your Church

With social media, there's always the risk that someone could say something negative about your church – whether true or not. Therefore, it's essential to be prepared for this possibility and plan how you will respond. 

If you respond politely and honestly, in the same way that for-profit companies handle negative reviews about their products, you might increase members' trust. Negative comments aren’t inherently bad, either – when you know your members’ complaints and suggestions, you can use them to improve your church’s service.

3. You Could Inadvertently Share Confidential Information

When sharing updates and stories about your church on social media, it's crucial not to share confidential information accidentally. Sensitive data could include anything from financial details about donors to personal information about members who attend your prayer meetings. 

The more your church grows, the more confidentiality might get overlooked. Your church must figure out alternative ways to protect your member's information. When tithing, for example, you can receive donations via websites instead of through physical envelopes.

4. Your Church Could Get Hacked

If your church's social media accounts are hacked, sensitive information could be leaked or stolen. This possibility is a risk for any organization that uses social media, but churches must be especially aware and cautious since they typically deal with sensitive information. You'll need a trustworthy staff member to handle this risk.

5. Social Media Can Be Addictive

Social media can be addictive and lead to unhealthy habits for some people. If not used in moderation, it can take up too much time and energy that could be better spent elsewhere. 

Encourage participation but not to the point that the online world takes precedence over their offline lives. Use your church’s social media accounts to direct members toward in-person community-building, like Sunday service and Bible studies.

The Church and Social Media: What's Next?

The future of the church and social media is looking bright. As more and more people join social media platforms, churches have the opportunity to reach a wider audience and build deeper relationships with their members. Of course, there might be some bumps along the way, but churches that embrace social media will be well-positioned to succeed in the digital age and beyond.

AUTHOR

Tithely provides the tools you need to engage with your church online, stay connected, increase generosity, and simplify the lives of your staff.

With tools like text and email messaging, custom church apps and websites, church management software, digital giving, and so much more… it’s no wonder why over 37,000 churches in 50 countries trust Tithely to help run their church. 

Category
Church Tech
Publish date
March 11, 2023
Author
Tithe.ly
Category

Benefits of Social Media to the Church

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