Marketing your church or place of worship is crucial to reaching new audiences, retaining existing members and showing the community what you’re all about it. But how easy is it to always think of new and exciting ways to go to market?
Many want to digitize their church and find new marketing tactics but aren’t sure where to start. The question is: Have you ever considered using digital signage?
Digital signage is the process of using TV monitors (digital screens) to share information about your church. Perhaps you already have a digital screen in your reception area, but you aren’t sure what to show on it. Or you’re looking to buy one, but need a few tips on making sure it’s worth the investment.
Without further ado, here are 8 crucial tips for using digital signage within your church to really make an impact.
This is true for any marketing principle, but especially so in digital signage. Luckily for the church sector, your visitors are interested in the stuff you want to tell them! That means your digital signage can be the digital noticeboard for a range of information - upcoming events, charity initiatives, new members and stories from within the community. Just remember to keep your content member-centric and it will ensure that your visitors return to look at your digital screens.
If there’s one thing that undermines a great digital signage display, it’s the same content sitting on loop for months on end. Make an effort to change your content every 1-2 weeks. You don’t have to start from scratch - adding a new slide, or updating a notice or image is enough. This will help you get into a pattern of ensuring your content is never out of date and that you only show notices relevant to that week.
In the ScreenCloud App Store we have over 50 different apps you can use to produce content for your digital screens. This means there’s no excuse not to get creative with the type of content you share. From noticeboards, to Twitter feeds, news and Facebook pages, it’s all there waiting for you to use.
This is where you can experiment - are your audience more receptive to one specific social media channel? Should you include multiple notices or just one or two? Test different types of content and see what response you get as this will help you to refine your strategy.
When you put your screen up or create content, think about the practicalities of its everyday use. Something many forget to ask is: will this screen be in eyeline of my viewers? If one of your audiences is children, is the screen going to be way too high for them to enjoy? You may also want to ignore audio - in busy times, it’ll be difficult to hear and in quiet times it could be an interruption! There are still lots of ways to make an impact with visuals alone. You also need to consider the timing of your messaging - if the text can’t be read in a few seconds you may want to display the content for longer, or repeat it multiple times throughout the loop.
Here’s a secret: those who schedule different content for different times of the day and different audiences have much higher success than those who don’t. You know best who visits your church and when, so you can easily make a schedule to match. For example, your notices at the morning service may be different to in the afternoon, and may differ again at the weekend. If you hold a specific sermon or event on a specific day, why not change your digital screens to compliment that? ScreenCloud’s drag-and-drop scheduling makes it really easy to set your screens up to show the right content, at the right time.
In today’s modern world we’re all suffering from screen fatigue. In all honesty, how long are your viewers going to be staring at your screen? One-minute, two minutes? Even during periods of wait, it’s likely they’ll be chatting to other members, or checking their own screens. Keep a tight loop of content and an eye on the number of messages you add. A loop of 30 pieces of content could mean your audience only take away one or two, whereas a loop of five pieces, repeated four times, could be much more effective.
As well as sharing content you should also ask your audience to go do something. This could be to join your mailing list, follow you on social media, or sign up to a new event or sermon. The power of the digital screen is that it’s memorable - all you have to do is ask.
Secondly, the more you repeat your call to action, the more likely it is to be followed. You should also pick one key aim and stick to it - you don’t want your viewer to be left confused about what they should do. Make it clear, simple and concise and you’ll be able to track the effects of your digital signage more easily.
Digital signage is a powerful way to connect the voices of your community. This could be through sharing social media feeds like Facebook or Twitter, videos of your community discussing topics, or images from your latest community event or charity project. Powerful visuals are a great way to communicate exactly what your church is all about. All you have to do is take a few images, pop them up into the screen or allow your community to submit them for you, by sharing on social media or to a dashboard.
This not only attracts new members, but ensures your existing members are reminded of why they’re there in the first place too.
Ready to set your digital signage displays up for your church? Checkout our free trial here.