What’s your name?
Where do you serve, what is your title, and how long have you served there?
Covenant Church in Doylestown PA
How would you describe your job to someone who doesn’t go to church?
I am the visual designer and PR person for our church.
What were some of the things that you experienced that shaped the way you approach your work?
I started going to a church when I was in Middle School that valued excellent communication and artistic expression of theology.
What’s the one thing you wish people knew about your job?
That it takes more time to create content than whoever is asking thinks it does. Sometimes I need time to let ideas develop; in other instances, I need time to develop and polish something that I feel good about putting out. Often I only get one of those two things, but when I get both is when congregants and other staff are most satisfied.
What is the one tool for your job that you can’t live without, and why?
I have a ShuttleXpress that has shortcuts assigned to it for every Adobe program I use. It has significantly sped up the time I spend editing videos in Premiere as well as consolidated workflow when creating graphics in Illustrator or Photoshop.
What is the biggest mistake that you see churches making when it comes to communications and marketing?
It is late to the game. I’ve observed, talked to others, and been in this situation myself, where church communicators notice trends but can’t convince their direct reports or other staff that it’s worth pioneering. Yes, its high-risk attempt to navigate a new thing but its also high-reward if it works out. Often by the time they have proof that it works, its already become commonplace and less effective since other churches or businesses have oversaturated and overused the technique.
Who is someone that you look to up in the church communications world?
Ben Stapley. Yes, Ben is pretty well known in the Church Communications world and he puts out the excellent stuff to learn from. But, when I was in High School, Ben found out that I was taking a Photography class and handed me the church’s camera one day and said, “Grab me a few shots at Youth Group tonight.” From there, I worked with him during his tenure at our church doing various creative projects and learning a lot of the philosophy of communication from him.
Also, anyone who is doing Communications at their church with no almost no budget. You guys rock, I’ve been there myself, and there’s an excellent opportunity to be creative there with your hands are tied it can force you to be more creative than you would be if you had unlimited resources.
It is quite refreshing to encounter church communicators that are brave enough to point out things that are hard to converse about. We appreciate your opinions on communication matters, Mike! May you continue on your communicator journey and spread your mindset to everyone.
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