Notes on the National New Church Conference

April 30, 2007 by

I had a great time in Orlando on Tuesday of last week at the National New Church Conference. I flew from Los Angeles to Orlando and arrived late Monday night. I woke up six hours later and finished off the creative communications session that Mark Batterson began the day before. It was a jam-packed two hours and I loved it! Mark had four hours on Monday and got to share his wisdom, wit and work from National Community Church, so when I spoke on Tuesday I got to tell everybody that just because it works for Batterson doesn’t mean it works for you.

Here’s an outline of what I covered:

Lessons in Not Sucking

Biblical foundation for marketing/communication

  • Matthew 5:13-16
  • Matthew 10:5-10
  • Luke 14:23

Stuff I’m learning

  • Change the way people experience church
  • Just because it communicates doesn’t mean it works
  • Marketing is being turned upside down, and the church can lead the way
  • Quit looking for results in things you’re not investing in
  • Cute, Clever, Cool (ingredients, not main course)
  • Pay attention to how your message is being translated
  • How to know when it works
  • Design matters
  • Be ready for success

Lists to the nines

  • Communication: Online
  • Communication: In Print
  • Common Communication Mistakes
  • Cheap Marketing Ideas for Church Planters
  • Building an Ideation Team
  • Know Your Audience
  • Working With Volunteers
  • Working With Firms & Freelancers
  • 9 Must-Read Books

Later that same afternoon I did a workshop with Drew Goodmanson. I came from the philosophical side of communication and Drew drove home the points using his technology lens. We covered:

  • Be Who You Are, Not Who You’re Not
  • 3M’s: Message, Method, Movement
  • 5 Essential Criteria for the Next Generation
  • The Audience is Always Right
  • Communication Without Repetition is Noise
  • Using Your Gut to Guide
  • Be Remarkable

I really appreciate what Todd Wilson and the whole crew behind NNCC are doing to help churches. Great people!

Post By:

Brad Abare

Brad Abare is the founder of the Center for Church Communication. He consults with companies and organizations, helping them figure out why in the world they exist, why anyone should care and what to do about it.
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11 Responses to “Notes on the National New Church Conference”

  • Erickyp
    April 30, 2007

    Is there anyway to get any of the audio of the sessions that you talked? I really wanted to be at that conference but we had to attend the confernce of our association (ARC- Association of Related Churches) in Austin at the same time.

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  • Kent McKeaigg
    April 30, 2007

    What were your 9 must read books?

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  • Mean Dean
    April 30, 2007

    I’d be interested in details regarding “Be Who You Are, Not Who You’re Not”
    I mean, how many churches are these days failing because they feel like they need to be “different like everyone else” … ditching their uniqueness to become yet another SaddleBack clone?

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  • brad
    April 30, 2007

    what are the 9 must read books?

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  • Casey VCW
    April 30, 2007

    I looked up the Biblical Foundation for Marketing/Communication verses.
    Mat. 5:13-16
    Mat 10:5-10
    Luke 14:23
    Sadly, I was unable to make the conference. Can you give me your quick explanation of these applied to marketing.
    Great verses. . .alittle foggy on the middle one.

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  • Brad Abare
    April 30, 2007

    We plan to post all the “lists” in the near future. In the meantime, here are the 9 books:
    The Tipping Point, Malcolm Gladwell
    Church Marketing 101, Richard Reising
    Purple Cow, Seth Godin
    Mind Your X’s and Y’s, Lisa Johnson
    A Whole New Mind, Daniel Pink
    Getting Real, 37signals
    The Long Tail, Chris Anderson
    Good To Great, Jim Collins
    Thinking for a Living, Joey Reiman

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  • Brad Abare
    April 30, 2007

    Mean Dean:
    The idea behind “Be Who You Are, Not Who You’re Not,” comes out of a post I did back in the very early days of Church Marketing Sucks. You can read it here.

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  • Brad Abare
    April 30, 2007

    Rumor has it that the audio will be available for free download in the next couple/few weeks at:

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  • Brad Abare
    April 30, 2007

    Your question suggests I write an entry on these verses. The bottom line is that I think these passages give both the reason for why we need to “market” (communicate) and the recipe for how to do it.
    We are to “go public” and:
    be salty,
    be transparent,
    think local, and
    keep it simple, so that…
    Luke 14:23, “I want my house full!”
    I suggest reading The Message version on these–it may help to paint a better word picture.

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  • Jerry
    May 2, 2007

    Having previously read all 9 on your list – Im saddened that One of Guy K’s books didnt make your list.

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  • Paula
    March 18, 2008

    Rats. I came here hoping from the domain name that you were against church marketing. I don’t see anything Biblical in any type of marketing. And especially wouldn’t be promoting any type of Conference where Rick Warren’s nonsense gets promoted.

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