Repost: I help lead a campus at LifeChurch.tv in Fort Worth, Texas, and like anyone else am always trying to develop into being a more effective church leader. Time and resources are limited, but the use of social media tools like blogs, Facebook and Twitter seem to stretch what we’ve known in the past as limitations. I have a lot to learn! Still, I’ve picked up a few tips that may help you. Whether you are a volunteer, group leader, ministry leader or Senior Pastor or just a general leader, these will help. Here are 8 Tips For Using Social Media To Be a Better Church Leader:
1. Stay connected with your people
Church leaders ask people at church to “come to us,” but many are often reluctant to “go to them.” Social media allows us to follow and keep up with the lives of those we lead “where they are.” Twitter & Facebook allow for the use of lists to group different types of people at our church (certain leaders, new guests, etc.) and stay connected.
2. Learn names
Facebook is a great way to put that face with a name. When your church attendance bumps up to the thousands, learning people’s names obviously makes the church feel smaller. (I am bad w names, but I’m recovering). We have a church fan page and I’ve learned a lot of names from there. When you can then call someone out by name at church, you will be able to enagage them on a whole new level!
3. Meet people that go to your church
I meet more people at my church through social media than I do in person. I repeat: I meet more people at my church through social media than I do in person. A lot of times at church I am on stage or I miss people because of the crowds. Social media often allows us to meet during the week online!
4. Virtual office hours
I know church leaders posting virtual office hours. People know they can ask questions, chat, pray or whatever. This is another touchpoint that can help a church leader to be more in touch with his or her people, and be a better church leader!
5. Online Prayer
God isn’t limited to time and space and neither is prayer! Even in the first century church, church leaders used written prayers to impact people at different locations. Social media allows us to do the same! Prayer for people through text, etc.
6. Modeling behaviors that you would like to see in your people.
What would you like to see in the lives of your people? Serving? Generosity? Sharing their faith? Focus on their family? Model these behaviors for them, show them what it looks like. This is exactly the way Jesus developed his disciples. Model these behaviors, then use creative ways to open up your life to the people that you lead online. I intentionally post about family at least once every 2 weeks, and about serving others once every couple of weeks.
7. Telling stories
Use social media to tell stories that will inspire others to live a different life. The best leaders are good story tellers. Use video, pictures, sentences and thoughts to tell a compelling story worth hearing. A moving story causes others to want to join in!
8. Build community
Use social media to ask questions, initiate conversation and build community. Some people will enter into dialogue online where they would never talk about in person. A conversation may be the one thing that inspires them to open up their lives to others.
What are other tips you have for using social media to engage those you lead? Do you wee any of the above tips as relevant in your own life? I’d love to hear in the comments below!
TheWayItCouldBe.com is a site promoting cultural impact through personal and spiritual transformation. Post topics include leadership, family, faith, culture, creativity & social media. Feel free to browse around by category. If you dig the site, you can subscribe for free email updates by simply entering your email address in the sidebar out to the right. – Chad