3 Reasons Why All Pastors Should Blog And Use Social Media

Should pastors and church leaders regularly use Twitter, blogs, and Facebook?  Without a doubt!!!  Though not a pastor, let’s look at the presidential campaign of President Obama for some key leadership lessons. 

Ranjit Mathoda said in a linked NY Times article:

“Thomas Jefferson used newspapers to win the presidency, F.D.R. used radio to change the way he governed, J.F.K. was the first president to understand television, andHoward Dean saw the value of the Web for raising money.But Senator Barack Obama understood that you could use the Web to lower the cost of building a political brand, create a sense of connection and engagement, and dispense with the command and control method of governing to allow people to self-organize to do the work.”

Mathoda points out three key areas for communication:

  • The Ability To Build A Personal Brand – Social Media allows a pastor or church leader to continually provide content to the church attenders in a way that adds significant value to their life.  In addition, pastors can identify and engage their online leaders by reading and commenting on their blogs, following them on Twitter, and connect with them on Facebook. 
  • Create A Sense Of Connection And Engagement – There is simply not enough hours to spend time with everyone in a church.  However, pastors can go daily to where they - online, their computer.  Social networking allows everyone in a church to know what their leaders are thinking and feeling each day.  This vehicle also allows people to give feedback to what is happening in the church.
  • Allow People To Self-Organize To Do The Work – Twitter and Facebook have been instrumental in the recent Middle East uprisings.  Similar movements could take place in a church as well.  Smart pastors understand that social media provides multiple points of entry for engaging people in various aspects of church.

Here are a few hints to help you get started:

  • Journaling – When blogging don’t try to write an epistle or book.  This is a mistake many spiritual leaders make.  Attempting to do this ultimately causes social media paralysis.  Simply talk about what you’re learning, thinking about, or feeling each day.
  • Brevity Is Best – Keep your blog posts to 300-500 words.  No more.  You will begin making it difficult on yourself to have to consistently generate content.
  • Lists – People have become less likely to read paragraphs.  Lists are scannable and easy to read.
  • Vision – Social Media allows you to daily cast vision.
  • Stories – As part of vision, tell stories of life change as often as possible.
  • Respond To Comments – Remember you can’t meet with everyone.  Social Media allows you to connect and invest with everyone in your congregation.
  • Use Facebook Specifically To Organize Minsitry – Every capital campaign, missions trip, community outreach event, etc.. should have a facebook page dedicated to organizing, telling stories, motivating, and enlisting volunteers.

 For additional information on the power of social media, check out these resources:

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4 Responses to “3 Reasons Why All Pastors Should Blog And Use Social Media”

  1. Jessica Mokrzycki on 23/07/2011 #

    I think social networking as an avenue, regardless of one’s message, can be extremely effective in reaching out to others. I don’t know why, in this computer-age more pastors wouldn’t take advantage of such a medium to get touch others with the message of Christ.

    Great post!

    • briandodd on 23/07/2011 #

      Jessica,

      Thank you for the kind words and I’m glad you enjoyed the post. Hopefully you are encouraging your church leaders to take advantage of social media. I hope you return to this site often and comment.

      Blessings,
      Brian Dodd

  2. Some cool tips here, thanks!

    I’ve found from my experience it’s a lot harder to enact a social media strategy when your congregation is made up of a diverse age group.

    Do you have any tips for encouraging interaction from all ages? Social media is something that I’ve seen used mostly in youth stuff, but I know the potential is there for all ages.

    • briandodd on 23/08/2011 #

      Mike,

      My advice would be to not limit your social media thoughts to just young people. Start making announcements via Facebook. Follow those in your church and encourage comments on the service. Ask them to be fans of the church’s Facebook page and to follow you on Twitter. The key is to simply engage.

      I bet you’re a great pastor. And I know you’ll do great with this also.

      Thanks,
      Brian

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