Facebook Evangelist

Facebook Evangelist

February 20, 2013 by

I wonder if Jesus had in mind the role that social media tools like Facebook and Twitter would have to play when he told his followers to go into all the world and make disciples?

Last Sunday I met a family at my church who were attending for the very first time.  I asked how they first heard about our church and the woman responded that she was Facebook friends with a woman in our church, and that since the woman was posting so many exciting things about our church on her wall, she decided she and her own family had to come and check it out.  Later that morning I discovered that, amazingly, another one of our connect agents (greeters) heard almost the exact same story from another first time guest that Sunday.  This woman deserves an award for her use of social media tools in bringing people to church.  She is our Facebook Evangelist.  Your church should have one too.

Here are a few simple ways you can use Facebook (or Twitter) to tell people about your church.

1.  Be Real
People want to be a part of something that is authentic.  Share the ways God is working in your life.  Your Facebook feed should be consistent with what is happening in your life and the way God is working in you.  You can’t mix exciting news about your church with you wild Friday pictures from the bar.  People will be attracted to your church if they are attracted to your life.

2.  Be Relevant
Use social media to connect with people where they are at.  People love stories.  Retell them.  Comment on the ways your church is serving others, highlight the special events you are a part of or share an anecdote about life change taking place around you.  It is easy to post pictures, video or graphics, and people love seeing these.  Visual posts will catch people’s attention and simultaneously highlight part of the church’s culture to your online friends.  Deep theology won’t likely do the trick, but sharing a simple nugget of application from the sermon makes the prospect of someone checking out your church much higher.

3.  Be Regular
Think about social media as an extension of your face-to-face relationships.  The more consistently you share about your church the more people will see how important it is to you.  And the more important it is to you, the more likely a friend will give it a try.  The more time you give something the more it means to you.  So be intentional about posting or tweeting about your church often.  Then build on that by making a personal invitation to a friend to come and see what your church is all about and why you are so excited about it all the time.

It’s likely that you have a large circle of people online who you can share your love of Jesus and your love for your church with.  These are just a few suggestions about how to use social media as a tool for evangelism and outreach.  You’ll still have to step out in person to make the connections, but by being real, relevant and regular online you can open the door for someone to take a step forward in their faith.

More: Check out our Power to the Pews series.

Do you talk about your church on social media channels?

Post By:

Brenton Balvin

Brenton Balvin is a writer, blogger and speaker who is passionate about helping churches create great first impressions, developing innovative ministry ideas and making sure church marketing doesn't suck. Brenton lives in Minneapolis, Minn. with his wonderful wife and three loud, energetic and basically insane small children (all under the age of four) who he is grooming for the NHL.
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11 Responses to “Facebook Evangelist”

  • Patrick
    February 20, 2013

    Do you think Pastors and church leaders should encourage their church to use Facebook as a marketing tool to invite and evangelize? Should we offer training like we do for evangelism? How do you balance that with face-to-face evangelism?

    • Kevin D. Hendricks
      February 20, 2013

      Yes! Have you read our Power to the Pews series? I don’t know if formal training is necessary, but if you’re doing formal training about evangelism, it would make sense to talk about digital mediums.

      In general, you should be encouraging your congregation to naturally talk about their faith and their church. If it’s important to them, they should be talking about it. That should happen naturally both in person and online.

      • Brenton Balvin
        February 22, 2013

        Kevin, great reply to Patrick. I think you are spot on when you say that people will naturally talk about what is important to them, online and in person.

  • GiorgioM
    February 20, 2013

    “People will be attracted to your church if they are attracted to your life.” But what if my life isn’t all that attractive? You suggest being authentic, but if I’m honest, I’m not that interesting. I’m sort of geeky. That’s why I spend so much time on FB.

    And if I try to manufacture this really attractive life, how authentic is that?

    • Brenton Balvin
      February 22, 2013

      Giorgio, great question. You’re right, a manufactured ‘attractiveness’ isn’t what you want. People will see right through that. Please don’t sell yourself short. You don’t need to be living a crazy, exotic life for it to be attractive. If you’re spending a lot of time on FB already you must have a friend base there. That is your start. Share small nuggets about what God is doing in your life. Share your positive feelings about what is happening in your faith community. Encourage others by being a encouraging presence online. All of this is attractive in its own way.

    • Kevin D. Hendricks
      February 22, 2013

      What’s wrong with being geeky? Geeks rule.

  • steven smith
    February 20, 2013

    i’ve often thought of canceling my facebook account because of so much junk being posted and as i get older i just don’t feel i have the need to be involved in every social outlet. but i find the more non-believing, secular junk that gets posted it just prompts me to post something so powerfully Biblical and i can’t quit. i find what works best is not to respond or post my own rhetoric, but just the Word – and some very powerful, “unpopular” verses from it. if i use my own words it can potentially spark a debate. but when i use the Word, i either get “likes this”, affirming comments or no comments at all. i find that many of my “friends” can’t argue with the Word even if they wish to argue with me. keep in mind that most of these are so-called Christians. i actually had an exchange with one guy (non-Christian) about OT/NT differences and how Jesus and Solomon taught different things (his view). weeks later i posted a verse and among others he “liked this.” so i guess i spend my facebook evangelism not on invitations to my church, but rather pricking hearts to invite them to Christ and revealing to them the fear of our sovereign and immutable GOD in an constantly changing world. so if the world on facebook hates me, they can hate me because of Christ or hate Christ Himself, not because of my “opinions.” i’m a nobody.

    • Andrew M
      February 21, 2013

      Steven, I love your attitude and confidence in God’s Word to do what He said it will do.

  • Brenton Balvin
    February 22, 2013

    Steve, sounds like Isaiah 55:11. Just as true online as from the pulpit.

  • Judy Keech
    February 22, 2013

    I am a pastor’s wife and I couldn’t agree with you more! Why not utilize ALL the tools we have to reach out with the GOOD NEWS!! Yes, and Amen! Thank you for sharing and posting and encouraging this generation to reach out and touch someone!! So easy. So effective. So Kingdom.

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