Name: Jonathan Carone
Where do you serve, what is your title and how long have you served there? Owner/creative director of CaroneDesigns. Been doing this since January 2015. Before that was in a lot of different roles over 4.5 years at Two Rivers Church in Lenoir City, TN.
How would you describe your job to someone who doesn’t go to church? I design websites, develop branding, and create promotional graphics for churches and businesses.
What were some of the things that you experienced that shaped the way you approach your work? I realized how little church people pay attention to things. I used to get mad about it, but then I became a normal churchgoer and realized how little I pay attention to things at church. There are so many competing things for our attention. So knowing that I try to create everything I do with the idea that we only have mere seconds to catch someone’s attention.
What’s the one thing you wish people knew about your job? That I want what’s best for them and that when I disagree with their idea, I’m not attacking them personally. So when I make a suggestion or critique of an idea, it’s an informed response based on data and how people respond to things and not an emotional criticism of their art or idea.
What is the one tool for your job that you can’t live without and why? Adobe Creative Cloud. There are plenty of lower cost options out there for beginners or part-time people who can’t afford Creative Cloud, but the tools I get for that subscription allow me to do pretty much everything I need to do.
What is the biggest mistake that you see churches making when it comes to communications and marketing? I think it’s two-fold: They think there’s a one-size-fits-all solution to something. Or they see a large megachurch with tons of resources doing something and think they have to do that same thing even though it doesn’t fit their demographic. The small church in rural America isn’t called to be creating and doing and marketing in the same ways as the urban church in a large city. God’s called us to specific people and specific people and we need to do our communications and marketing within that context.
Who is someone that you look to up in the church communications world?
Honestly, I don’t know if there’s a specific person I’d look to here. Instead, I’d say it’s the smaller churches and church plants who are finding creative ways to make an impact on limited budgets with limited time and resources. Those people inspire me because it shows you can do anything if you take the time to plan it out and look at your options.