Going Digital Pitfalls – Church Communication Strategies

Are you transitioning your print communication to digital newsletters or electronic
Are you expanding your digital communication to members?

Why are churches moving to digital communication?

Many churches are turning to digital communications and there are three main reasons

  1.  Churches are seeking quicker ways to get information into the hands of their members.
  1.  Churches are trying to find ways to decrease printing and postage costs.  
  1.  Churches are looking for ways to measure not just who they send information to, but who actually opens or reads the information.    

Churches that have made the transition to digital communication are seeing an increase in member engagement.

What are three common digital communication pitfalls and tips for avoiding those pitfalls?

#1 – One common pitfall is the assumption that emails will instantly replace any newsletter or brochure.  There are reasons brochures and newsletters are formatted differently than a letter or a note.  The format is part of the communication.  By replacing a familiar print format with an email template, you risk introducing a foreign format that may not be received well by your members.  

Tip:  Instead of completely replacing your newsletters or brochures, just save them as a document or a PDF file (recommended) and use digital means to send the document to your members.  Send it as a text message attachment or an email attachment.  If you happen to be using QuikKast, you can always attach a document file to your message and the document will be accessible to the receiver by way of an embedded weblink in your message.

#2 – A second pitfall is to only focus on emails.  Your church communication strategy must include digital communication methods beyond email.  As we published in an earlier blog post, it is becoming more effective to communicate with text messaging and live voice calls than even with emails. Read more here. 

Tip:  Make sure you have a solution that can send messages to your membership using means beyond just email.  Text messaging is great for your members who are heavy cellphone users.  Voice calls are great for older congregations and for members who live in areas with little to no cell phone service.  And, use emails to get to those members who routinely engage in that way.

#3 – A third pitfall to watch out for is over engineering your communication tools.  With so many tools available these days, you may fall into the trap of getting one tool for emails, paying for a service that does text messaging, and paying staff or using volunteers to dial phone numbers.  Or, what’s worse, you may believe that it has to be complicated and expensive to reach your members by voice, email, and text.  

Tip:  Think about what you routinely need to communicate with your members.  Ask yourself what method of sending these messages would be most appealing and impactful.  What types of messages are your members most apt to look at and respond to?  Then, try out a tool or two that will give you the flexibility you need to meet those goals without costing you a fortune.   If you don’t have a solution or solutions in place today to provide flexible methods for delivering messages, you may want to consider QuikKast that enables a single written message to be delivered all three ways – email, text and voice.

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