Many churches are gearing up for Easter. Check out this promotional video from my home church (James River Assembly)…
What creative ideas are you seeing churches use to promote their Easter services?
Undoubtedly, April 24th 2011 is one of the most important days of this year for your church. However, I would suggest that May 1st is actually the most important date on the calendar. Why? What’s happening on May 1st? Nothing much… as far as I can tell. (Apparently, it is the 8th annual celebration of “Global Love Day.”)
So why would I suggest that May 1st is more important than Easter? Because, that’s the week (and the weeks following) that will measure the effectiveness of your Easter outreach. And it’s the week where a lot of Easter visitors will decide if they should come back to your church and keep checking out what you have to say and who you are. Unfortunately, many churches put a ton of time and energy into the 24th and forget all about the 1st. So what are you doing to make sure all the time and energy that you invest in your Easter Celebration translates into visitors actually coming back to be a part of what God is doing at your church?
If you need some help, here are some ideas for you to consider:
- Don’t allow your creative team meetings to only focus on Easter. Build in time to discuss the series following as well. Make sure you brainstorm creative ways to promote the next week. Be intentional to not expend all your creativity and resources just on Easter, allow your team to use some of that energy for the weeks following.
- Use Easter to kick off a special series for the kids. Get them excited about being a part of the series and wanting to come back.
- Allow there to be some loose ends in the Easter service that will be resolved over the next couple weeks.
- Acknowledge that becoming a follower of Christ can be a process for people. Invite pre-Christians to go on a journey with you.
- Preach the Gospel! When people genuinely connect with Jesus then you obviously have a natural avenue to begin connecting them with God’s family.
- Be intentional about getting your team and your people praying and asking God for fruit that remains.
- Look at the scriptural reasons why people may not come back. Ask God for wisdom, insight, and a strategy to see people make a connection that lasts.
- Make sure your special Easter service is congruent with your regular church services. Give visitors a taste of what you are really like, and this will help you avoid the shock of a major downgrade the next week.
- Challenge your staff and regular attendees to think this way. Avoid conditioning people for the one hit wonder. When people invite their friends make sure they use language and ideas that extend beyond just coming to Easter. Challenge your greeters, altar workers, and volunteers to go beyond a simple greeting to making connections and extending invitations to connect with people the next week.
- Close the service with an invitation to come back – be specific on why people should come back.
- Give people a big picture of why you exist. Show how people are able to be a part of something that is bigger than them.
- Surprise people with a video trailer for an event that is kicking off in the fall. (Especially since Easter is so close to summer this year)
- Give people easy ways to connect with you during the week and initial steps to being a part of your community – Facebook, Twitter, Website. Ask people to get out their phones and go ahead and connect during the service. Have fun with it. You could even ask people to go ahead and click to attend your next series on Facebook. Do some fun interaction on Twitter and Facebook over the next week.
- When in doubt, shorten your service. Leave people wanting more and avoid people feeling like the service is dragging on forever.
- Collect actionable information. Ask people to fill out a Welcome Card. Explain that you are respectful with their information (that you won’t nag them) and how you plan to follow-up. (Have a plan and communicate it)
- Add a Twitter user name spot to the welcome card. Then use Twitter to send thank you notes throughout the week and invite people back.
- Rent out a space in a local coffee shop for the week following Easter. Invite people to come from 6 – 9pm to meet staff and visit.
- Promote some of what the church has to offer that meets some of their current needs. This could be an upcoming financial class or class on parenting. Demonstrate how a relationship with Jesus can transform their entire life and benefit their whole family.
What are some creative things you have seen work and what are some ideas you would add?
See more of James River Assembly’s videos by clicking here.