The Power of a Testimony

July 1, 2009 by

“And they have overcome (conquered) him by means of the blood of the Lamb and by the utterance of their testimony…” (Revelation 12:1, Amplified Bible)

In the marketing world, there is a great understanding of the power of a testimony. It doesn’t matter what you claim about your product, but it does matter that some of the people who have used your product share their experience.

I am involved in the marketing strategy group of a large Christian conference center in Sweden, and we encourage all of our guests to comment on their visit. Then, we ask for permission to use that in our printed material or on our web site, and it has proven to be incredibly effective for us.

Some of you might have seen the I am Second site. Simply put, it’s a site funded by a Texan businessman where famous artists, sports stars and regular people share their stories about how Jesus became first in their life. I thought I was going to spend just a few seconds on the site, but I caught myself watching testimony after testimony. I was so impressed by the power of these testimonies, realizing that it would be nearly impossible to watch them and walk away unaffected.

I found myself considering how poorly we utilize people’s stories in church marketing–particularly on church web sites.

Surfing around the web I find that most “modern” church sites have one main feature in common, a prominent slideshow telling about the theme for the next upcoming message series. Of course, there’s nothing wrong with that, but on most sites it’s impossible to find stories from the people who are actually in that church and have seen their lives transformed by the power of God.

You have them in your church! Maybe they are not former drug addicts, gang members or sport stars, but they are people who have faced all kinds of problems or found purpose in life. And they’ve found the solution in their relationship with God and with your church.

One Danish church ministry I recently created a web site for chose to highlight stories from their members in a “Believe it or not” section. It’s people with all kinds of backgrounds who have seen their lives transformed by the power of God. They also host an online environment every night where people can come in and chat with some of these people.

It’s been very successful for them, and they have even seen people surrendering their lives to Jesus online and becoming a part of their church community.

My pastor often reminds me that, instead of constantly talking, we should let other people speak, the people who can testify about how that message has changed their lives. And I think it’s time for us to give all these people a voice in our online and offline marketing. Maybe it will touch people in an even more powerful way then if they would just hear it from our pastors!

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