Hello and welcome back to another post from Church Reach University. Today we are going to be talking about blogging. Blogging or content marketing is a powerful marketing tool. With a blog post, you normally write good content which communicates an intention towards your audience.
Starting Your Ministry Blog
How can a blog impact your church? A blog can extend your churches influence as well as gaining a bigger SEO [search engine optimization] footprint. Blogging offers you the opportunity to create a bunch of blog posts, rather than a single web page, which can help you rank better in the search engines by using certain keywords.
For example, if I wanted to rank well for churches in Dyersburg, TN I would post blog content titled “how to find the best church in Dyersburg, TN” or “The characteristics of the best churches in Dyersburg, TN”. Basically anything that capitalizes on that term. I don’t want to write about being the best church in Dyersburg, TN as this can come across as a sales pitch, which will be a real turnoff for most people. You will want to attack these common search terms with an unbiased viewpoint.
While on the topic of blogging and search terms, I am at the moment writing a blog post targeting the search term “churches in Seattle” and my title of the blog post will properly be how to find the best church in Seattle, WA?. In this post, I will discuss 4-5 different points about churches relating to the churches characteristics. Writing this blog post, my whole aim or intention is to deliver valuable information that will help them find a great church. What is going to occur also with this article is the reader is going to attribute an expert status to the writer, as well as the church behind the article. This will mean that they are more likely to visit my church than another as I am addressing their concerns.
That is the power of church blogging.
In your blog, you can write about community events, salvation issues, community tragedies, and community news. Write posts and record podcasts and videos and make sure you get these published your church gets noticed by your community. The chief aim of blogging is to extend your reach and influence people. Without a blog, your influence could be roughly measured by taking into account the amount of people you personally influence times the amount of people those people influence.
For example, fifty people who attend your church could influence 3-4 people each. With a blog, this influence or reach is greatly extended through your online presence. In order to exert the greatest influence, you will need to produce quality professional posts, not ones that are filled with spelling mistakes and the painful syntax. Blogging will bring you online traffic, people who are granting you permission to market to them, and it just expands your footprint of influence.
I believe that every minister should blog. Casting our gaze back into the past, it has been a pattern that men who are favoured by God have been writers, Moses, David, Solomon Peter and Paul. These writings are still influencing people today. So when you put pen to paper, or more likely now fingers to the keyboard, you are both extending your influence to people who you have formed relationships with as well as complete strangers. Even after you are dead, your influence will still be fostered through your written word. Influence made by one on one contact can be fleeting, but the written word is eternal.
You as a minister will also gain personal benefits. Because you have to research every post you will be learning or acquiring new knowledge constantly. You will also become more creative as you will need to keep coming up with new and novel ideas for your blog. For instance, when I graduated from Bible College, I was asked to stay and teach for the next year. When I started teaching, I noticed that a lot of my students were people I knew from my time as a student.
This made me feel a little uncomfortable as they had once been my peers. I was given some advice that resonated with me. That throughout my career, I would end up teaching or ministering to people from all walks of live. They could be older than me, better educated, have a better vocabulary, that have better jobs or earn more money than me. Despite this, all I really needed to make sure was that I always stayed at least one step ahead of my students or audience. Other time this one step will become 3-4 steps or a whole yard as the more I learn the more expertise I am gaining.
In relation to blogging, you may create a blog post about something that you have just learned about but you could still gain the title or epithet of ‘expert’ from people who are completely new to the topic matter. This is great for ministers as you are trying to be perceived as an expert in the message that you are trying to convey. You just need to keep the posts consistently as well as keep them informative and creative and this will gain you a readership. And you will enter the role of an expert in relation to the topic/s discussed and will spread influence over time outside your realm of personal relationships.
Now let’s say you have written a book. The easy part is writing the book and getting it published, depending on your definition of easy. The real hard part is actually selling it. I know of houses or offices stacked with books written but not sold. The authors can’t seem to generate excitement or a buzz about their books that they have laboured over for months or years. Blogging can generate this much needed and desired after excitement and interest.
Let’s say you wrote a book on leadership if you start posting posts about leadership topics you can use the traffic and interest gathered from this online content to start selling your book. Blogging can be a return on investment on many different levels. This includes gaining expert status on different topics and selling your book through your posts content, as well as advertising on your blog. Instead of being only able to sell a few copies to interested people that you personally know, you could potentially sell hundreds of copies from innovative methods employed on your post.
With my posts on church reach university, I often gift free content to people who are not yet registered at church reach. I do this so I can extend my reach or influence to a greater amount of people. Furthermore, with my blog content I am targeting not only SEO terms but also content that I know people will be interested in. I can then say that if you want more of my content, you should join Church Reach University thus gaining influence and reach. So those are the beneficial aspects of blogging, gaining expertise, gaining knowledge and increasing creativity, extend the influence and can also bring you return, such as selling your book or bringing people to your churches doors.
A thing that I want to leave you with is this encouragement or instruction—Start blogging right away. Yes, when you first start out your blog posts may be down right horrible, but rather than shying away from this potential awfulness instead embrace it. You will get better with time and practice as is the case with most things. If you instead keep all the potential words bottled up in your mind, you will never write anything and therefore never have an impact on someone with your words.
You could be the greatest writer who never wrote anything, which is just a really sad thought. Don’t wait until you think you have all your little ducks in a row, with your writing, marketing and website, rather just dive right in right now and start blogging.
Think of the YouTube stars who you adore and admire, they normally started from very humble beginnings. For example, Rhett and Link with Good Mythical Morning began with videos made by themselves with few viewers, now they have a professional studio and staff and millions of subscribers. The point of this little detour into YouTube stars, is to exemplify the point is that Rhett and Link did not wait until they were all decked out in professional gear and help rather they just started and used what they had available to them at the time.
So even if you don’t have the prettiest blog set up or not the sharpest writing skills, start writing anyway. Publish and then start writing another post, rinse and repeat. After about a year or so you will notice that you have become an expert blogger and will definitely experience or feel the benefits to with that status.
Thank you for reading, if you have any questions please let me know and remember to spread the word about church reach university.