Once again, Easter is fast approaching. Every church knows that this event sees the most online searches about “God” and the highest church attendance. Every ministry knows that Easter is the best opportunity to connect with potential new guests, keep in touch with current new visitors, and revive connections with existing church members. Question is: How can we be missional this Easter, encouraging the most people to show up to our events?
Why don’t people show up?
When we dive deeply, we see that the root of the problem isn’t directly tied to Easter or any other special or regular service you are trying to promote. It’s connected to how we give our people information. Let’s look at two typical situations.
If a potential visitor is looking to learn more or connect with your church and they find your website, would they get overwhelmed by your online event information? Would that search lead them to abandon the process and likely not show up? Too much information is often just as ineffective as too little.
Falling through the cracks
It seems like the people who come to church should surely know what’s going on. And yet, you’ve probably been here: The weekend church service is over. Next weekend is Easter. You and your team have worked really hard on this for months. You casually ask a group of church regulars: “Hey, are you coming to the Easter services next weekend?” You hear the dreaded answers:
I didn’t know.
Was it announced?
What time is it?
In this case, incredible as it may seem, your people have missed the information you have worked so hard to give them.
Let’s be honest, these frustrating situations are common in many churches, and it isn’t just about Easter, so how can you do things differently?
We’d like to propose a simple ‘AND’ strategy.
One part is all your already great marketing ideas: flyers, social media posts, banners, telephone chains, etc. The other part is a centralized, digital, up-to-date, easy to manage online calendar.
But wait, we already have a church calendar on our website.
OK, but let’s look at three important points.
So that your people do not fall through the cracks, is your calendar reliably up-to-date with all the events and changes? That’s a huge job which is difficult for many churches without a dedicated person or an integration with a Church Management System (ChMS). And when things change (as they always do), churches struggle to find the staff and the time to keep the information updated.
Second, to make sure the information is not overwhelming, how specific is your calendar? Can your viewers filter your events to see just what they need? Or perhaps, with an event this big, are you displaying an Easter-only calendar—no distractions, just Easter front and center?
And third, what about the visuals? Are they focused more on functionality and simple esthetics? Or are they designed to be engaging and easy to use; display well on desktop and mobile, making it easy for the person to take the next steps?
Tips to improve how many people make it to your events
These five tips will increase attendance at your events during Easter and the rest of the year.
- Use an ‘AND’ strategy. Separate the idea of promotion vs. where you want to direct traffic to. In other words, you use different media and channels to ‘advertise’ your events, but you direct traffic back to a central asset which you own and control.
- That central asset is a calendar page on your church-owned website. The calendar page is easy to use and leads to the user taking action.
- When running specific events such as Easter, create a filtered calendar view with specific information to make it easy for your people to follow. For example, if your church is multi-campus (multi-location), display a separate calendar for each location to minimize confusion.
- Use a design which leads to conversion. Your design should mesh with your digital strategy, be specific to your intentions, and include your unique church branding.
- Ensure the calendar is always up-to-date using a workflow that is easy for the team to manage.
About that workflow…
Do you already have the staff or solution? Great! You are on the right track.
If not, and you currently use Breeze ChMS, Planning Center (PCO), or Church Community Builder / Pushpay (CCB) then Display.Church has made this easy for you to do.
No integration, staff, and/or the tech know-how? We highly recommend using our Display.Church integration with the free Google calendar.
Integrating with Display.Church gives your church website a filterable, easy to update calendar that you can set and forget, and that always syncs with your events.
Right, let’s sum up.
Sending out emails? Posting on social media? Now you can Include a URL which always links to a visually-striking, very unique, filter-specific, Easter events calendar or landing page that stays up-to-date. Automatically. No additional management.
You have now made it easy for members of your congregation and first-time guests to quickly find the information they need while feeling connected to your brand and mission.
Display.Church would like to make your data pretty this Easter.
It’s free to get started, easy to set up, and very cost-effective to keep if it works for you.
Use Display.Church with one of our integrations (Breeze, Pushpay/CCB, or Planning Center) or with the free Google Calendar. If you want to learn more or try it out, you can use the invite code: CHURCHCOMMS for a free trial (no credit card required). Visit Display.Church.