1. Know your Social Media Target Audience
Who are you creating content for?
The vast majority of church Facebook pages I’ve seen seem to be talking to themselves.
They’re conversing only with their church members. While you do want to maintain communication with your members, the purpose of church Facebook pages is to reach the community and connect with visitors.
How you communicate with an audience is based on who is in your audience. For example, the language you use when speaking with a Christian audience will be different if your audience is primarily Buddhist, or atheist, or college students. By knowing the people you want to serve, your church can be more effective in meeting their needs.
Choose a day. Gather your team (or maybe it’s just you) and assess the community around the church.
Answer the following questions:
- What is the socioeconomic status of my community?
- What might their interests/hobbies be?
- Are there young families or seniors?
- Are there schools in the area? What kinds of businesses are there?
- Are there people walking their pets? Is it an ethnically diverse community?
- What are their religious backgrounds? What kinds of jobs might they have?
Creating your social media strategy without basic knowledge of who you are trying to reach is like making a dress for someone you did not measure.
At the end of the day, you have a dress—but your customer will not buy it, no matter how beautiful it is…because it doesn’t fit! It’s worth it to spend the time to get to know the people in your church’s neighborhood.
We’ve provided a help sheet to facilitate your data collection on your target audience.
2. Create Meaningful & Engaging Posts
Take a moment to look at a few Facebook pages of Adventist churches.
What kinds of posts do you see?
As you scroll, the most common posts are usually about an upcoming (or recent) event at the church.
Other times, you might find a scripture graphic or a picture with the words “Happy Sabbath.”
While there’s nothing wrong with these kinds of posts, if you want to grow the page and boost engagement, create posts that compel page visitors to like, comment on, and share the post.
In early 2018, Facebook’s co-founder Mark Zuckerberg announced that the social network is now primarily concerned with content that sparks “meaningful interaction between people.” They are looking for posts that encourage dialogue between Facebook users.
Content from family, friends, and groups (more on groups later) will rank higher than business and church pages.
This means the content on your page must inspire discussion among your visitors.
Following the example of Christ, we see that He reached the hearts of people because of His willingness to have discussions with them. His conversation with Nicodemus and the woman at the well are among the most memorable.
Here are a few examples of post types that spark discussion:
- Asking questions
- Live videos
Phrases to Avoid
- Photos & Videos
- Photos & Videos
Facebook’s algorithms frown on posts that include direct Calls to Action, like “Comment Below” or “Tag a Friend.”
Steer clear these phrases. Instead, ask questions that will inspire people to respond in the comments section.