Jeanette Yates: Finding Help in Community

Jeanette Yates: Finding Help in Community

September 19, 2016 by

Jeanette Yates is a former English teacher, current stay at home mom, sometimes Pilates instructor and amateur blogger. She also works at a church. Jeanette is the communications director at Southside UMC in Jacksonville, Fla.

The job started by filling in for someone else’s maternity leave (“She reached out to me because she knew I loved Jesus and could write,” Jeanette says), but the role grew from there. Jeanette went from 15 hours per week to 40, and quickly felt like she was drowning.

“I am not promoting a product, I am sharing the gospel.”

“My job responsibilities were increasing and I was feeling overwhelmed by all that was being thrust at me,” Jeanette says. “I felt like I was constantly failing, but I had no one to help me see what exactly I was doing wrong or how I could start doing things more effectively.”

Finding Help

So she turned to Google and found the church communication community she needed.

“I still remember Googling something trying to find help for email or websites and coming across the Church Marketing Sucks articles,” Jeanette says. “I was like, ‘Yes! Church marketing totally sucks! I love this site already!’”

Jeanette dove into the Church Marketing Podcast (“I think I listened to all of them in like two weeks,” she admits), and went deeper from there, exploring other articles and then jumping to an author’s Twitter account or blog.

“I was like, ‘Yes! Church marketing totally sucks! I love this site already!’”

“When I first started listening to the Church Marketing Podcasts, it seemed like all of the things they were saying ‘don’t do,’ we were doing,” Jeanette explains. “Sometimes the host and the guest would be giggling about something that seemed so amateur to them, and I would think, ‘Oh my goodness, I hope they never see one of my emails, websites or Facebook posts.’ And yet, at the same time, I did not feel condemned. Usually, along with the ‘don’t do,’ there was a ‘this is how you fix it.’ So I would listen to a podcast or two and then go to work and take something off of a website or download a new software or program to try out.”

Jeanette stumbled through link after link and found Brady Shearer and the Pro Church Podcast, the That Church Conference, the Social Media Church Podcast, 5 Leadership Questions and more.

“I owe a great deal to Church Marketing Sucks, as it was the ‘gateway’ for me to connect with so many church marketing people,” Jeanette says. “I was having a hard time with the job and ready to throw in the towel, but after reading several articles and getting hooked into the podcast, the door opened to more resources.”

Be Better

Now Jeanette is even helping others. She stepped up as a guest host with our #cmschat on Twitter, leading a discussion on YouTube, and shared her current challenges as part of our ‘Week in the Life’ series.

“I am now part of an encouraging and supportive community of church communications professionals that help me be better and help remind me that I am not promoting a product, I am sharing the gospel,” Jeanette says. “I cannot emphasize enough how my job satisfaction, productivity and even my outlook on ministry has changed due to what I have learned through Church Marketing Sucks and the resources it has lead me to.”

“However, I consider my life worth nothing to me; my only aim is to finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me—the task of testifying to the good news of God’s grace.” -Acts 20:24


Learn more about the transformation of Jeanette Yates in our video interview, available to members of our Courageous Storytellers Membership Site.

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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