Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Resources To Help Smaller Churches

For small churches and bi-vocational church leaders, the current climate of church work is not getting any easier. However, the opportunity to make a huge impact could not be any greater because of the resources that they have at their disposal. However, the sheer number of resources is overwhelming so I put together some of the top eight resources categories that could help even the smallest church become more effective.

Church Database

Ministry is people and all churches need a tool to in order to keep
up with people. Years ago we had the church roll book, which was fine, but today we have the ability to keep track of families, attendance, giving, membership, spiritual growth and so much more online. These tools used to be cost, time, and knowledge prohibitive but today are much cheaper and intuitive enough for anyone to use. 
  • Website: http://www.touchpointsoftware.com/
  • Cost: $2 per record per year
  • Pros
    • Access to member information anywhere
    • Organize church member involvement
    • Online giving
    • Check in for children’s ministries
    • Contribution and pledge management
    • Email or text
    • Reports Generator
    • Intuitive system so volunteers can manage!

Website

Website, if you do not have one people who are looking for a church will not find you. Remember, a website primary target is people who do not go to your church so be careful not to use “church talk” when adding content. Remember, with most website less is more!
  • Website: http://www.wix.com/ (and many others)
  • Cost $150 or less (if you get one tither to your church because of this tool you will have paid for it over and over)
  • Pros
    • People can see your church before they come
    • Effectively communicate ministries, service times, and locations
    • You do not have to be an expert. Fill in content and add some pictures
    • Intuitive system so volunteers can manage!

Social Media (Facebook)

Do not do them all, pick one and let someone do it for you. Currently I would suggest Facebook. Find someone you trust and let them post pictures of worship services and church events. People who are looking for a church will look at your social media before they visit.

Google

Make sure you claim your listing on Google. Google is the front door for this and the next generation of churches. By calming your listing you can add information like worship times and pictures. I have looked up several church on google and the address was wrong in the google system. If you have bad information in Google, people will not be able to find you. By claiming your listing, you can ensure you accuracy.

Planning Center Online

Be intentional about how you constructs your Sun
day services. Without a plan, you are planning to fail. With Planning Center Online you worship leader can yourself can craft services online. If you plan services ahead of time, you will be more successful.

Sermon Spice

Great video resources. Sometimes a video element can take a good message and take it to the next level.

Open.church

Creativity takes time. Time may be one of the most valuable commodities to a small church leader. Open.church is provides all of their resources free. This includes sermon series ideas and the media to support them.

Get feedback

Often the biggest distractions go unnoticed. Much like the dirty sock on the floor that you step over each week you never see it because it always there. When someone walks in the first thing they see is that dirty sock. Nothing could be more valuable to a small church leader than honest feedback from someone who is not a member of their congregation. Invite another church leader to come in and provide feedback on the Sunday morning experience. People who visit your church see the issues, they just do not tell you about them when they never show back up.