Church Social Media ManagersWhat they wish Pastors Understood
As a pastor, do you panic when view counts for video church services are down, Facebook posts aren’t getting as many likes as before, or the church Instagram hasn’t had any new followers in a while? It’s easy to blame whoever is working on your church social media, but that role is more challenging than you might realize. So, we asked over 150 Church Social Media Managers (CSMMs) what they wish pastors understood about their work. Here are their top 5 results:
#5 - Building an active online community doesn't happen quickly
Your CSMM needs time to determine which social media channels are the most effective for your church mission. Facebook and Instagram are the most popular, but there are others like YouTube to consider, maybe even Pinterest and Snapchat to engage specialty groups. It will take weeks, even months for your CSMM to determine what content connects the most on those platforms, and why.
#4 - You need a staff member or volunteer dedicated exclusively to social media work
Social media is the digital ministry of your church. This is not something you should tack on to the full-time responsibilities of your Family Pastor or Youth Pastor. And, you need a people person who is experienced with social media.
#3 - It takes a crazy amount of time to post and respond to comments and messages
Creating new content is time consuming as many churches try to post at least once a day on multiple platforms. Then there are comments and direct messages. Those need to be answered prayerfully and very promptly to build community. Attending to social media happens every day, during and outside of 9AM – 5PM.
#2 - Social media strategy is constantly evolving
Post content that worked last month may not continue to engage. Facebook changes their feed algorithm frequently which requires your CSMM to try new strategies like Facebook Groups and advertising. Moderating groups and running ad campaigns require even more time.
#1 - It’s very challenging to create fresh content
A good CSMM knows that neither views, likes nor follows directly correspond to spiritual growth. They need to constantly create content that syncs with your church mission and can be measured (like an event sign up or prayer request contact). Most CSMMs publish some original content combined with carefully-curated material from paid resources. Video content captures the most attention, but is also the most time-consuming to produce.
Like many pastors, Church social media managers frequently express discouragement and burnout. Maybe it’s a perfect time to ask how your CSMM is doing, pray for them and learn how you can equip them in this essential ministry role.
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