You’ve done it! You’ve put in all the work, done all the planning, and finalized all the details to make the next big event at your church the best one yet. Now what?
Well, now comes the biggest challenge of all: making sure people show up!
Promotion is key to a successful event, but figuring out creative and effective ways to promote can certainly be a challenge.
When it comes to promotion, there are so many ways to go. Traditional mail or email? Announcement on Sunday morning or a note in the bulletin? A phone call or text reminder? Posters hung up around the church or in the community? All of the above? The options are seemingly endless!
When it comes to promoting any big event for your church, you already have access to the best platform: your website! Your online space is the best place to start when it comes to spreading the word about your events.
For both members and visitors alike, your website is the place people are coming for information on what’s new and next at your church. So when a big event is on the horizon, your online space is a great spot to share that with your people.
To help you get started, here are five things you can do to promote your next big event online.
1. Highlight It On the Homepage.
If your website is the online home for your church, think of your homepage as the lobby. It’s the first point of contact for many—the place they’ll come to get the first taste of information about your church. That makes it the perfect spot to highlight your next big event. Feature a graphic or link on your homepage promoting your event. Keep it clear and simple, but be sure to include the basics—when, where, and why you’re hosting it. Don't forget to provide a big, noticeable place to click so visitors who want more information can easily get to it from the homepage.
2. Incorporate Social Media.
No matter your age or stage of life, social media is quickly becoming the best online platform to promote what’s coming up and engage with your people. Use the social media platforms people are already using to spread the word. Post graphics to Instagram to promote your event. Share it on Facebook and ask your people to do the same. Tweet out a link to sign up or get more information. As most churches have their social media feeds linked up on their websites as well, it’s a great way to cross promote—point people to your site through social media and to your social media from your site.
3. Engage via Email.
We’ve talked about the importance of capturing and keeping an up to date email list for your church online, and when it’s time to share your next big event, that email list will be a huge resource! Use email to communicate with early and often about your event. Build anticipation by including a quick note about the event in your weekly or bi-weekly e-newsletters. Send out a specific email focusing on the event as well as a reminder as sign-ups close or the date gets closer. Though you want to make sure to keep people informed, be mindful of the amount of emails you’re sending. The quickest way to turn people off from something is to flood their inbox with it!
4. Take Your Sign-Up Digital.
If numbers are limited, sign-up is required, or an RSVP is preferred for your event, make it digital. Push people to your website by asking them to sign up for your event online. Not only will this help you avoid the annoying task of keeping up with a paper trail of sign ups, it will also help you stay organized and up to date by keeping all the sign-up information in one place. Announce the event on a Sunday morning and give people the link to sign up online. Sending people to your website to find out more about an event or sign up online is a great tool to lead folks from simply knowing your website exists to actually visiting it and checking it out for themselves.
5. Post a Follow Up.
After the event has taken place (and of course been a huge success!), your promotion work still isn’t done. Don’t worry; this last piece of the puzzle isn’t too hard! Post an event follow up to your website to let people know how it went. This can be anything from a few photos, a quick highlight video, or a written recap. It’s just one final step to promote the outcome of your event and get people excited to participate in future events at your church. Once they see what a success this event was, they won’t want to miss the next one!
Before you can promote events on your church website, you have to have a church website, right? If you're ready to plan and build an easy, beautiful site, we can help! We can help you know what should be on your website. Click the button to download this free eBook of the 11 Must Haves for your church website.