Rethink Communication: A Message Delivery Problem

Rethink Communication: A Message Delivery Problem

January 25, 2019 by

This week we launched a new book that will help churches clarify their communication and actually connect. It’s called Rethink Communication and it’s written by church comm veteran Phil Bowdle.

In an exclusive Courageous Storytellers webinar, Phil talks about what the book is about, the most important message, and more. We’ve got a quick snippet from that webinar, where Phil explains how the church has a message delivery problem:

The playbook that got us to where we are is not going to get us any farther.

Message Delivery Problem

Phil Bowdle: A lot of churches are finding themselves at a place now where they’re struggling with how do I get my message out. ‘If only people were hearing us.’ Or ‘If only more people were coming in the doors of our church.’ The reality is, I think they feel like, ‘If only we promoted it more,’ or ‘If only we just yelled it louder, then people would hear us.’ I think what we have to realize and take a step back from is that we don’t have a message problem, we have a message delivery problem. The message we have is the greatest message in the world. We have the story and the person of Jesus. The heart of our message is the gospel, it’s the greatest thing we could have. Our message is not the problem. Our delivery of that message is the problem. I think a huge part of what we need to rethink is that the playbook that worked 30 years ago no longer works. The playbook before around how we would communicate as a church was really built around the assumption that people were attending every week, the assumption that people were paying attention when they were attending, and that you could engage them when they came inside the walls of your church.

Mark MacDonald: Wait, what? You mean to say that’s not the way it is today?

Phil Bowdle: Strangely enough, it is not. It has changed, not only in the last 30 years, but especially in the last 10 years. I think every church leader I talk to is saying, ‘Are you seeing this?’ It’s changing each year—we’re seeing people engage with the church differently. And so it’s not crisis mode, it’s not something we need to freak out about, but it is something we need to rethink and really consider if we have a message that we really care about and we want to communicate, then the playbook that got us to where we are is not going to get us any farther. We have to rethink how we communicate our message in a way that’s going to grab attention, that’s going to engage people whether they’re inside or outside the walls of our church, and that we can engage them with a message that matters to them, that breaks down barriers that they’re experiencing in their life.


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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