This month our Courageous Storytellers Membership Site is focusing on social media. We’ve got all kinds of resources, from planners and guides to pre-written social posts and graphics. We’ve also got a collection of “22 Creative Ideas for Instagram at Your Church.” Here’s a taste…
Ah, Instagram. It’s one of the preeminent social places to be these days. Why? A few numbers:
- 600 million. You read that right. Instagram claims over 600 million active monthly users. Friends, that isn’t a fact to sniff your nose at.
- 100 million. Stories. Instagram’s latest feature, Stories (video), claimed 100 million daily active users after only two months.
- 95 million. The number of photos and videos shared per day.
- 80 percent. Only 20 percent of users hail from the U.S. Know what that means? You, from your phone, can reach people all over the world with the gospel. That’s exciting!
If your church already uses Instagram but isn’t seeing desired results, have no fears. We’ve got some ideas to rejuvenate your account. They’ll not only attract users but also make Instagram fun again.
And, if you don’t use Instagram, we’re also here to help.
Instagram Peer Pressure
First word of advice: ignore the peer pressure. I speak from experience. Peer pressure convinced me to join Instagram. I deleted my account when I couldn’t come up with a reason to be there. Fast forward a few months, and I rejoined with a very specific and very tactical strategy. It made all the difference.
Second word of advice—and this goes out to current and interested church users—check out these 8 Instagram ideas and accounts. You should consider the examples, then figure out how they could be used to benefit your local body.
1. Invite People to Participate in Special Events
If your church community hosts a Thanksgiving dinner, runs a 5K, or plans a Super Bowl party, invite people to the event. Crosspoint Church got a little “punny” and recently asked people to bring canned goods to their “Souper Bowl Sunday.”
2. Share People’s Stories
If your church captures people’s stories, Instagram acts as a perfect outlet for sharing them. You can post a photo with a caption containing a link to the story or a video. Depending on how often you publish stories and the overarching church communications calendar, you could put the link in your bio so that it’s easier for people to get to the narrative.
New Photo Story: “Perfectly Sewn” // Click the link in our bio to watch now! // “I felt like there was a certain standard of beauty that I couldn’t live up to. The standard was symmetry. And symmetry was something I was never going to have.” // Lindsey was born with a congenital melanocytic nevus that spanned thirteen centimeters and covered the entire right side of her face. Fearing the growth of the nevus and the potential of skin cancer, her doctors performed a nine-hour surgery to remove it, leaving Lindsey with scars that would affect her for the rest of her life—she often felt separate from others, unknown, and vulnerable. // By understanding her true identity in Christ, Lindsey now sees her scars as a testimony of God’s grace in her life. “Scars are evidence of God’s miracles.”
3. Go Behind the Scenes
You know the drummer who’s always taking photos and videos during setup? (OK, maybe that’s just me.) You could piggyback off their efforts when appropriate and show a behind-the-scenes look at the church and what goes into getting ready for Sunday services. Other opportunities include the welcome table and children’s services.
4. Show Your Local and Global Involvement
People love to see other people giving to local neighborhoods and the world. You don’t have to do all the heavy lifting; find organizations with which to partner and show how you work with them. Cary Church of God recently shared their support of Operation Christmas Child.
5. Celebrate Mission Trips
Jesus tells us to “go into all the world,” so show how your church goes to the nations and what your teams accomplish while there. It allows the senders at home to feel involved the work. Sharing mission trips photos can also foster a sense of community and belonging.
6. Address Cultural Issues
As a church body, we should engage the cultural issues of today. Our ability to meet people where they are allows us to introduce them to the One they need. Plus, Paul tells us to be ministers of reconciliation (2 Corinthians 5:11-21). Addressing cultural issues is one way to do that.
7. Embrace Art
If your church is for the arts, share your artists’ work. Austin Oaks Church has a small gallery dedicated to their artists’ work and hosts a “Gallery Walk & Talk.”
8. Show Off Your Funny Bone
Your church is having a series on dating or marriage? Have some fun with it. Humor doesn’t work for everyone, but you should give it your best shot. If the joke falls flat, you can always pull out some #DadJokes.
More Instagram Ideas
Hopefully those are some inspiring Instagram ideas. Want more? Join Courageous Storytellers for access to the full list of “22 Creative Ideas for Instagram at Your Church.”