Google ” church social media ” and you’ll be served up over 200 million articles about using social platforms for your ministry. There’s no longer any question about whether your church should be on social media or not. Being on social media isn’t enough. You need to prioritize using it well. If you want to take advantage of all the opportunities social media provides, you might need to elevate its importance.

Let’s face it, there is a lot of churches and ministries vying for people’s attention out there. If your church is involved but not invested in growing their presence and social media skills, you might be wasting the time you are investing. Social media offers so many perks and possibilities, it’d be foolhardy not to spend some time more devoted to your social media channels. In fact, it might be the secret weapon for struggling churches. It can be a great tool to boost your attendance for important holidays.

If you can’t justify time spent on social media, I encourage you to consider the following ways your ministry might be missing out.

1. Social media might be the first place people find your church

Over 46 percent of church planters say that social media is their most effective method of outreach. Think about that for a second . . . out of all the possible outreach methods, almost half of today’s church plants are seeing a bigger return for time they invest into social media than anything else. So it isn’t like social media is competing with your website for the most visible digital channel; it’s competing with every method churches are using to draw attention to themselves.

With a thoughtful church strategy for social engagement and some regular money devoted to advertising, you can create an awareness of your ministry and send people to your website where they can learn more. Plus, when you add the Facebook pixel to your site, you can retarget the people that Facebook has sent to your website.

2. You can build a relationship with your congregation’s friends

Let’s face it, this is the reason you’re on Facebook. Through the likes and shares of your updates from people who already attend your church, your content is pushed into the feed of their friends and family. When you explain to your congregation that their interaction with your Facebook page is a form of outreach, you can build a strategy around sharing your culture with people who might be open to learning more.

3. Facebook’s groups and events rival some church social networks

There are some great software solutions out there for churches to use to facilitate digital community. But one thing that’s fantastic about Facebook is the fact that most of your people are already there every day.

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Using Facebook groups for ministries or studies is an incredibly easy (and free) was to keep everyone together and on the same page. You can create groups for prayer, home groups, Bible studies, classes, or lifestyle groups for people that like to do things like hike or garden. You can make them as private as you want, and you can invite people outside the church, too. This gives people another level of exposure and interaction with your church.

Facebook events are another stellar way to raise awareness for an event. You can invite everyone in the church, and they can invite others, too. All updates and important information can be communicated in the event group. And you can even experiment with ads to promote your event. And, again, the great thing about it is everyone’s already on Facebook. (Check out our 10 Facebook Tips for Churches.)

THERE’S MORE: SEE PAGE TWO FOR MORE IDEAS

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