Marketing Strategies For A Small Country Church
Let’s be honest. There are many small country churches across North America. They need marketing too. Perhaps they will employ different marketing techniques than some larger city churches…but they still have to communicate and position their relevance to and in their community.
The mission Jesus calls them to is still about outreach. They have the good news story that people in their communities and small towns need to hear. So what marketing strategies could they use to reach those that live in their community?
Four Useful Marketing Strategies for a Small Country Church
- Build a Simple Web Site. Even in the country or a small town, the Internet now prevails. I think a simple web site with the basic information about the church and one that can serve to provide more details about upcoming events is key. It should have simple and intuitive navigation but a professional appearance that represents the culture and branding of the church community. Find a reputable marketing agency to build your site. It does not cost as much as you might think and the value it brings as a communication tool is well worth the price.
- Create Community Events. Create relevant social events for your community. In a small community the church can so easily serve as a social hub. Find ways to reach people and to draw them to your church for “non-churchy” events. In that process coach your members and attendees to build relationships with those who do not regularly attend church services. People are looking for community (even in small communities). Show them that your church can have fun and that you are real and down to earth people. Then let them see that your faith and your relationship with God is genuine. When they see that, they will be more open to further exploration of the spiritual message you will want to share. Make sure you build a “database” of people’s names and contact information so you can easily target invite them to future social events…and outreach events that you will plan in #3 below.
- Follow the Social Events with Outreach Events. Once you have built the relationships you can strategically plan some more spiritually focused events and invite the non-churched people to those as well. Make sure they are events that have a very strong outreach focus and be careful to not make them too churchy. Eliminate as much as possible church lingo and be sure to remember that they do not have a Bible background…so explain things in simple yet effective terms.
- Make Your Communications Professional. Both events above require you to distribute posters on community announcement boards at grocery stores, post offices, libraries, or anywhere that local news and announcements may be seen. Be sure to have these designed as professionally as possible. Do not to use clip-art and do not photocopy the posters in black and white on your 20 year old photocopier. Spend a little extra money and get these designed and reproduced professionally…it really does not cost that much and it makes a big difference in the message you communicate and how it i received. Get smaller invitation sized cards made for your church attendees to give to their friends to invite them. Personal invitations are always the best marketing method. Make sure you refer people to your web site for more information – include your web site address on all communication tools.
Employing these simple strategies and tools will help you more effectively reach people in your community. Hey, these same rules would also apply for bigger churches too!
Do you have any additional marketing strategies or marketing tools you would recommend for a small country church? Have you seen anything unique that a small church has done to reach it’s community? Please share your thoughts in the comments section below.
Image via Flickr: § Mary §Tweet