Advertising doesn’t need to be a dirty word. At its core, advertising is all about promoting an idea. And as a pastor or church leader, you’re trying to promote the most powerful idea of all—namely the gospel of Jesus Christ.

So when you’re designing your church growth strategies, include digital marketing techniques to expand your reach.

After all, 77% of Americans own a smartphone. By using digital marketing you’re putting your ideas right where the users actually are.

Read on to find out which techniques might work for your church or organization.

Go beyond a Facebook Page

Many churches have a Facebook Page. They use it to post announcements, share reminders, or sometimes discuss local issues.

Facebook Pages are not digital bulletin boards. Users will only see your Page’s posts if you give them something to interact with.

Share images from church events, letting attendees tag themselves. Start discussions about Bible verses, sermon series, or current events. Encourage conversation.

The more interaction you get, the more followers will see your content.

Or go one step further and try broadcasting snippets of your services using Facebook Live. Church growth strategies depend on broadening reach, and you can’t get much broader than 2 billion Facebook users.

Use email with your church growth strategies

‘The list’ has been the digital marketing phrase for the last couple of years. And with good reason.

Social media is flooded with content. Yet people still spend far more time in their email inbox. Your content is more likely to receive attention via email than social media.

Use your list to email updates about your church and the work you do. But you can also send inspirational verses or other content that your congregation will enjoy. Send them helpful videos that get across messages you want to share with them or help them understand. If you want to shake things up, you can even send out humorous emails occasionally, like funny cartoons, provided they’re relevant to the purpose of your message.

Give your list a reason to look forward to your emails and people will be more likely to open them.

Start a blog

Blogs aren’t the place to share news about your church or organization. Visitors won’t know who you are, nor are they likely to care.

Instead, your blog can be a place to discuss important issues, provide sources of help, or answer questions that your congregation is asking.

You can use your blog to leverage the power of Google to direct seekers back to your website. Ultimately, your website should lead them to you.

Turn your blog into a useful resource and a place of community online to extend the boundaries of your congregation. You can also use your blog to encourage signups for your email list.

Don’t neglect the SEO side of things

Church growth strategies should also look to the immediate local area. Claim your local business listing on Google to help improve your local search engine optimization (SEO).

This will increase your likelihood of being found in local internet searches. Sprinkle your name throughout your blog posts and within your website copy to help boost the brand of your church or organization.

You can’t help anyone if they can’t find you! Digital marketing is the best way to help internet users do just that.

And you can rest easy in the knowledge that you’re growing a 21st-century church, faithful to communicating the timeless message of the gospel right where people are.

Do you have any questions about how digital marketing could help your church? Let us know in the comments section below!