If you aren’t planting a church any time soon, is there anything you can glean from the church-planting movement that will help you transform your established church into an establishing church?
For a series we call The Math of the Kingdom, we reached out to several church-planting networks and posed this question to some of their seasoned, in-the-trenches planters. Their responses revealed six strategic themes that any pastor can implement in any context: know your community; be known by your community; pursue diversity; develop leadership; make disciples; and adopt a planter’s heart.
No matter the age or size of the church you lead, it factors into the math of the kingdom. Explore these strategies, ideas and insights to see how they can contribute to multiplication in your church.
Principle No. 2: Being Known by Your Community
DAVID PARKER, SummitLIFE in Sedona, Arizona: First, personally set the example by engaging in community events and inviting others within their sphere of influence to join them. Second, plan for the church community to engage in what the local community already has on the books: St. Patrick’s Day parade, Fourth of July celebration, Thanksgiving food drive, Santa Claus coming to town, etc. Third, ask your local community leaders how they feel your church community could best help to carry out the city’s goals and desires.
JUSTIN DAILEY, The Action Church in Winter Springs, Florida: When we moved to the Orlando, Florida, area in the summer of 2013, we made it a goal to let someone know about Action Church every day. I truly believe the best marketing tool is a personal invite. Something powerful happens when someone shares their journey and invites others to come and see what Jesus has done.
As leaders, we must not only cast vision for an “invite culture” at our church, but we must also equip our church to do it. We brand our series, give our members invite cards and shareable graphics for social media, and have outreaches—all with the goal of reaching new people.
Another thought on marketing relates to the importance of making sure what we are selling matches what we are delivering. It would be a bad first impression if your experience did not match your marketing campaign.
JOSE ABELLA, Providence Road Church in Miami: First, partner with neighborhood schools, parks, community centers and neighborhood associations. There is no better marketing tool than mobilizing people who wear church “swag” and participate, support and contribute to needs. Making a tangible, sizable group presence in a community goes a long way.
Secondly, social media is a must. Assign a staff member or volunteer to develop a robust presence on social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. People who visit the church’s social media pages should have a good handle on events and service times, as well was a clear means to understand the core values and distinctives of the church.