Are People Talking About Your Church?

Are People Talking About Your Church?

May 18, 2011 by

While browsing Twitter the other day I came across two people talking about churches thanks to videos about them.

First up was the “my church is cooler than yours” boast followed by a link to a video showing Cause Community Church in Brea, Calif., attempting to break the world record for simultaneous arm wrestling. That’s right, 216 people arm wrestling at the same time.

Next came a plug for a news story covering just one of 190 service projects done by North Coast Church in Vista, Calif. The news story covered a massive volunteer project to spruce up Kelly Elementary School of Carlsbad, Calif., site of a school shooting last year.

Now we could sit here and talk about how ridiculous simultaneous arm wrestling is and how great this massive service project was. But I’m not interested in comparisons. In both cases the actions of the church prompted a video to be created and someone to tweet about it.

That’s remarkable.

What’s your church doing that’s worth talking about?

Now you could walk away from this post thinking that you need to do something to get people talking. You’ll think about ways to manufacture interest and remarkableness that will get passed around the social sphere.

That’s backwards.

Don’t do something just to get talked about. That’s like the kid who tries too hard to be cool. You need to be authentic.

You’re already doing something. Maybe the question to ask is why whatever you’re already doing isn’t worth talking about.

Post By:

Kevin D. Hendricks

When Kevin isn't busy as the editor of Church Marketing Sucks, he runs his own writing and editing company, Monkey Outta Nowhere. Kevin has been blogging since 1998, runs the hyperlocal site West St. Paul Reader, and has published several books, including 137 Books in One Year: How to Fall in Love With Reading, The Stephanies and all of our church communication books.
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5 Responses to “Are People Talking About Your Church?”

  • Cameron
    May 18, 2011

    I’m glad you put it around this way—people will pick insincerity up a mile away. It’s a pretty big turn off.

    Of course, we could also take the Matthew 6 tack and try to keep quiet about what we do.

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  • Ben
    May 18, 2011

    Picking up a common theme around California churches :-)

    When working with churches, one of the first questions I ask is “Are you looking to craft brand experiences that start conversations?” If they say yes, I ask “What do those conversations sound like?”

    Your post is a great example that being noticed doesn’t always mean running naked down the street with a URL on your body. Getting noticed can be impacting your community in a meaningful way. I think Matthew 10:16 is best interpreted as “Be Strategic and be authentic.” And both strategy and authenticity go hand in hand when thinking about these things.

    Anyway, enough about this post, I gotta back to painting this URL on my chest before rush hour hits…

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  • Karen Anderson
    May 20, 2011

    I know churches really have to try to market themselves to get people excited to come. But maybe, just maybe we should be boasting about how many lives Jesus changed this week, how many marriages were saved and how many people were healed instead of how much money we raised or how many arm wrestled or how many were fed. Maybe our marketing should be plain and simply on the Gospel.

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    • Steve Lopez
      May 25, 2011

      Amen, Karen. The Church is a unique entity in the world, but we don’t market ourselves as if it were. We seem convinced today’s culture simply cannot relate to the concept of “Christ in us, the hope of glory.” So, in the eyes of the world we come across as just another service organization, another entertainment outlet, another source of diversion. They notice us, but for “inauthentic” reasons. Yet the Church’s true brand is absolutely unique. Aren’t we the go-to place for encountering God and His life-transforming power? We appear desperate to be specialists in the culture — while the world desperately needs us to be specialists in the gospel. If that’s what we are, shouldn’t we be making that message clearer?

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  • Greg
    May 31, 2011

    I heard of a church in Cedar Park, TX (just North of Austin) that sent postcards that were hand written to let each home know they were being prayed for. Not necessarily a call to come visit them, but just “hey, we love you, we love our community, we’re praying for you”. Pretty impressive way to be authentic and get people talking. From what I understand, it is taking a year for the church of roughly 100 to hit all 15,000 homes. Still a neat idea.

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