When I visit family and friends in Atlantic Canada (where I grew up) I have to remind myself and my family to please wear nice socks. It sounds odd. But I’ve been living in North Carolina for 14 years and it’s easy to forget the “ways” of my homeland: when you enter a home, you take off your shoes. And thus, the need for nice socks.
“When in Rome, do as the Romans do”.
Our churches find themselves in this new digital world with their worship guides. The problem? Most people in this foreign-feeling land don’t like long-form printed materials so we need to adjust to what they’re accustomed. It’s not getting rid of church bulletins, it’s simply to make sure it plays well in this dynamic digital world.
Fortunately, there are many tools to help you! All it requires is that you have a website that is simple and is current that becomes the nucleus of your digital hub.
Here’s are 2 ideas to get you started.
For the first one, you should have a mobile-friendly website. That way someone sitting in your service, with a mobile phone or tablet, can view and navigate your website.
- QR Codes: They’re those odd-looking blocks of digital noise you see on a lot of print materials. It’s only purpose? It allows someone to quickly move from printed communications to a website (for interactivity, or more content). All it takes is a free QR Code reader app on a mobile device. Then the QR code can easily send someone from your church bulletins to the sermon notes or the cool video that was used in the announcements. Remember, once they’re on your website, people can share the content to their friends and social media quite easily! Need help creating the QR Code? Simply search for “create free qr codes” for the ability to set them up.
- E-blasts: People aren’t reading the print church bulletins as much as we’d like, so remind your members and reinforce the bulletin information through regular emails. Just keep the email snippets short so people can browse them and click on the ones that interest them most to get additional information. If you feel really adventurous, separate your lists into age segments, create age-related e-blasts, and get people to sign up for the ones that interest them. It’s like customized church bulletins!
This Digital Hub paradigm shift isn’t going away; it’s simply a way to get your print materials to point to your URL — where the core content is available and shareable. Make sure your website can support this strategy.
If we get it right, we can communicate your ministries effectively in this digital world!