I encourage every church to consider establishing a Promotions/Public Relations Department. Within this department a number of critical areas are addressed:
- Special Event Promotion: Your most successful evangelism tools are church guests. 100% of all new converts come from visitors that come to your church or church activity. Therefore, every church event needs to be promoted well and in a professional manner. This includes flyers, bulletin boards, websites, social media, advertising, church bulletin, PowerPoint announcements, posters, banners, and more. “Getting the word out” must be a priority for every church.
- Website Content: Research shows that 80% of all church guests visit your website before visiting your church. If your website looks dated, lacks fresh content, is incomplete or does not provide necessary information, it will be harmful to your image. Websites must be updated weekly or even more often.
- Social Media: Churches that fail to utilize key tools like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, Pinterest, Google Plus, Tumblr, and others are cutting short key methods of reaching souls. Utilizing these tools takes time and effort. Assembling a team of volunteers and coordinating them with a unified message should be a priority of every church.
- Advertising: Advertising is expensive. A church needs to carefully allocate financial resources to get the best return on their investment. But if your community is to know you are there, you must be willing to invest in whatever you can afford: mail-outs, billboards, Google ads, flyers, business cards, etc. Try something new each year. One church has reported great success with bus stop ads, seeing several new guests each week as a result.
- Graphic Design: Programs such as Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign are challenging to learn. But the need to project a quality graphic image is critical. Logos, business cards, stationary, flyer design and all the aforementioned areas require the use of graphic programs. Someone must learn them or you must be willing to spend the money to hire the work done.
- Promotional Releases: What your church does is potentially newsworthy. Contacting newspapers, radio stations, TV stations, and other news outlets is still a viable means of promotion. But the information must be packaged properly and quality photos/videos must be provided, along with contact information for possible interviews.
Other duties can include PowerPoint announcements, weekly bulletins, church sign board, bulletin boards, bulk mailing, email lists, and more. A church need not go lacking in these areas. Start simple; focus on a single area. Then slowly add more volunteers until everything is covered. A fully functioning Promotions Ministry can greatly assist in evangelizing your community.