The mini-blog application Twitter seems to be the new shiny tech toy of late (which means it’s already old news). So what is Twitter? Basically you send out 140-character to updates to anyone following you via the web, text messages, Facebook, etc. Twitter prompts you with the question “What are you doing?”, which when taken literally can be incredibly inane. But the more creative folks can get interesting–especially trying to work within the 140-character limit (Ana Marie Cox of Wonkette fame has good, entertaining coverage of the Republican primaries).
It’s basically digestible, bite-size, temporary content.
So what’s the point?
Well, it’s yet another new technology medium that may or may not be worth trying out. Like a lot of the new technology trends, it may be in today and out tomorrow. But if you’re trying to reach a tech savvy crowd, it might be something to explore.
The main thing to keep in mind is that Twitter is just another medium. It could be a volunteer coordinator or an evangelism tool. Experiment and see what works:
- Ask questions: Sermon research, who’s coming to an event, what people might be interested in, etc.
- Share insights: Maybe it’s a quote from a sermon, maybe it’s a sudden insight from a Bible study.
- Highlight content: Point people to blog posts, articles or resources on your church web site.
- Hype events: Remind people of events and give a glimpse of what they’re missing.
If you’re interested in jumping on the Twitter bandwagon, it helps to check out a few folks already using it (like me, Terry Storch, Tony Morgan, Anne Jackson, Kem Meyer, etc.). And it’s definitely the kind of thing you need to try to really understand (even then you might not get it). It’s also community-driven, so if you try it by yourself it won’t be much fun (like blogging when no one’s reading).
Here’s a few more resources that might help:
- ProBlogger shares 9 benefits of Twitter for bloggers which can easily be applied to church marketing.
- Newbies Guide to Twitter
- The Big Juicy Twitter Guide