Category Archives: web 2.0

The Best of ‘SOCIAL MEDIA and MINISTRY NEWS’ – SUMMER 2013 EDITION

Summer

Can you believe it? It’s Labor Day Weekend 2013 already! Where have all the sun-drenched days of summer gone? The  autumn leaves of red and gold will soon be swirling in the air. To mark the occasion, we have assembled a special souvenir of the awesome Summer of 2013 that we hope will bless you, and remind you of those much-too-soon-departed, wonderful days of summer!

It has been an especially rich and exciting summer at our companion publication, SOCIAL MEDIA and MINISTRY NEWS.  For each of the past 90 days, SOCIAL MEDIA and MINISTRY NEWS has offered its readers the best church social media news this summer, packed with information, videos, and photos of the latest, most-talked-about and interesting developments in the faith, social media, and technology space. (Click on the Archives icon to check out previous issues!)

Faith Based Media 2.0 is a faith-based journal of information, innovation, and inspiration. It is designed to creatively share the Gospel of Jesus Christ through social media and web 2.0 technologies. We’re always so excited to share the most exciting things happening over at SOCIAL MEDIA and MINISTRY NEWS with our loyal readers.

So, we’ve teamed-up and pulled together this summer’s top inspirational stories, chats, podcasts, and thought-provoking opinion pieces from the June, July, and August 2013 editions of SOCIAL MEDIA and MINISTRY NEWS.

As we say goodbye to the halcyon days of summer and eagerly anticipate Autumn 2013, we’re happy to present this unique, special edition of the VERY BEST of ‘SOCIAL MEDIA and MINISTRY NEWS – SUMMER 2013 EDITION’. Enjoy!

What church social media blog posts, podcasts, or articles were you excited about this summer? Please share them here with our readers and become a part of this, our special, SUMMER 2013 EDITION. Btw, to get your day started right with an on-time word of inspiration and encouragement, be sure to check out FAITH and DEVOTION DAILY.  Much Love & Appreciation!

Until next time, remember, you can do all things thru Christ Jesus!

Be Blessed,

Kenneth Lillard

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The Best of ‘SOCIAL MEDIA and MINISTRY NEWS’ – June 2013

SOCIAL MEDIA and MINISTRY NEWS is a daily online publication which brings you the very best information from across the Internet on all the latest developments, news, and views in the social media, faith, and technology space.

It’s halfway through  Summer 2013 and we’ve pulled together the top inspirational stories, chats, podcasts, and thought-provoking opinion pieces from the June editions of SOCIAL MEDIA and MINISTRY NEWS for your information, convenience, and enjoyment.  The following represent the summer’s hottest church social media stories – the Very ‘Best of SOCIAL MEDIA and MINISTRY NEWS’ – June 2013:

Are there any June 2013 church social media articles, online chats, podcasts, or posts you would recommend to our readers?

During Summer 2013, stay on top of all the latest SOCIAL MEDIA and MINISTRY NEWS by subscribing today!

Until next time, remember, you can do all things thru Christ Jesus!

Stay Blessed,

Kenneth Lillard

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The Best of ‘Social Media and Ministry News’ – April 2013

Newspaper

The month of April has been a very exciting time at SOCIAL MEDIA and MINISTRY NEWS, a daily online publication which keeps you up-to-date on all the best and latest developments in the social media, faith, and technology space.

Many inspirational stories, exciting events, and lots of great information have been shared in this month’s issues. Here are some of ‘The Best’ featured articles from the last 30 days!

90-Hour Bible Reading Marathon – The Christian Post

List of Online Churches – djChuang

Praying for Others … There’s An App – Kye S. Chung

Church Success in the Digital Age – Church Tech Today

Top Digital Tools for Churches [Infographic] – Bill Reichart

Facebook for Churches: Key to Social Media Success – Church Tech Today

The Bible Miniseries Being Made Into Movie – The Christian Post

A Handy Guide to Develop Your Church Communicatons Plan – Church Leaders.com

Responding to Crises & Using Digital Tools for Ministry #chsocm: #ChSocM Chat Transcript: 4/16/13 – ChurchSocMed #chsocm

Pastors Respond to Boston Marathon Bombings – Christianity Today Gleanings

What church social media news would you like to share for April 2013?

I truly appreciate you!

Until next time, remember, you can do all things thru Christ Jesus!

Be Blessed,

Kenneth Lillard

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Churches Use Social Media in Disaster Relief #HurricaneSandy

 

Hurricane Sandy wreaked havoc across the Jersey Shore, NY, and Long Island a couple of weeks ago. People immediately jumped on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube to post and share their stories, images, and videos of the super storm.

Social media sites provided platforms for people around the tri-state area to map the flooding from Hurricane Sandy, and of course, help news organizations cover the crisis. Many took to social media to connect, share and collaborate around core needs, even as the region’s own infrastructure  struggled or totally failed. Local people even posted maps of open gas stations!

While NYC has a sophisticated digital initiative, NYC Digital, that sprang into action, local churches also used the Internet and social media to help respond to the disaster. Oasis Church in Springfield, NJ has been using the Internet to respond to the super storm,  including attracting hundreds of volunteers from across the country to help make the Thanksgiving holiday season a little brighter for those affected by the devastation.  And even though the megastorm has passed, many still need assistance, and much recovery work remains to be done.

Here are 10 ways churches can use social media to assist during disasters:

  • Use FB and Twitter as an early warning system for members and the community-at-large. Twitter, often, comes out with the news  before the news organizations.
  • Share news updates, storm experiences, prayer requests, and calls for assistance.
  • Use FB and Twitter to let people know how to prepare, what’s coming, and where to get help.
  • Provide links to official disaster response organizations like FEMA, NVOAD, local police and fire departments, hospitals, Red Cross, Salvation Army, etc.
  • Create bulletin boards, using #hashtags on Twitter linked to FB, to post the latest news, injury reports, power outages, evacuations, dangerous situations, damage reports of churches and elsewhere in the community, relief resources, etc.
  • Prepare a crisis plan/ phone tree. (Btw, social media is actually the new phone tree tool.) Remind members to check on each other and those in the community, especially the vulnerable and elderly.
  • Use FB and Twitter to organize, mobilize, and publicize relief and recovery efforts.
  • Provide prayer and pastoral care for those whose lives have been impacted by the disaster.
  • Establish relationships and digital connections with relief organizations before the disaster strikes.
  • Prepare your plan for the next disaster now, and begin communicating it ASAP!

For more information on social media response to disasters see the following links:

72 Hour Lutheran – TX-LA Gulf Coast Synod Disaster Preparations and Response

Church Media: Being Ready In and Out of Season – Church Mag

Hurricane Sandy Resources: How You Can Volunteer and Donate – NJ.com

Instagram Users Share 10 Hurricane Sandy Photos Per Second – Mashable

Oasis Church Uses Web to Recruit Hundreds of Volunteers for Hurricane Sandy Aid– NJ.com

Recovers.org – Community software that helps organize volunteers, donations, and information during disaster situations

Texting Connects Families During Disaster – Orlando Sentinel

Social Media Aids Hurricane Sandy Cleanup on Staten Island – silive.com

Social Media’s Crucial Role in Disaster Relief Efforts – Guardian.co.uk

Social Media Follow Hurricane Sandy’s Destructive Path Up the East Coast – USA Today

Social Media Tools For Disaster Planning and Communications (Twitter Chat) – Church Social Media Blog #Chsocm

What Was Novel About Social Media During Hurricane Sandy? – Patrick Meier, iRevolution 

How is your church/ministry preparing for the next disaster? How is digital social media included in your strategy?

Until next time, remember, you can do all things thru Christ Jesus!

Stay Blessed,

Kenneth Lillard

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Creative Use of Social Media by Churches Continues to Grow

Digital technology and social media definitely enable churches to expand their reach far beyond the four walls of the sanctuary! Ministries have begun to get a firm grip on these new, exciting, web 2.0 technologies. Many churches are expanding their creative and strategic use of a wide variety of social media platforms to effectively share the Gospel of Jesus Christ!

A recent FACT study of 11,077 congregations by the Hartford Institute for Religious Research revealed 7 out of 10 U. S. congregations have websites. In addition, 4 in 10 had Facebook pages in 2010! The following are examples of how some congregations are creatively using the continually expanding array of social media tools to enhance their effectiveness:

  • YesHeIs is using short documentary video to very creatively point people to Jesus.
  • Churches are making it much easier for people to find them online by putting up their own website or Facebook page.
  • Christ Fellowship Church in McKinney, Texas allows you to download their worship program by scanning a customized QR code.
  • Many churches allow you to watch worship services streamed online from their internet campus with live chat running, so you can share spiritual insights in real-time.
  • Church apps are available to watch sermons, donate, and do much more, including even swapping goods and services to help others in the community.
  • Confession: A Roman Catholic app was recently released for the iPhone. It prompts the user through pre-confession soul-searching prior to meeting with the priest.
  • The Internet evangelism project, PeaceWithGod, employs search-engine algorithms to steer people toward salvation!
  • Sing along with a new tablet hymnal from Church Publishing. In March the Episcopal Church’s publishing house released eHymnals for the iPad and other digital readers.
  • Biola University, a private evangelical school in La Mirada, CA is hosting a Digital Ministry Conference, June 5-7, 2012! 
  • The digital Bible  is available for your mobile devices, including smart phones and iPads, allowing you to connect with your faith in the checkout line at the grocery store, on the subway, or in the gym!
  • FB and twitter status updates provide insight into the lives of many congregation members, availing ministries  ample opportunities for service and caring.
  • Pastors can work relevant FB or twitter status updates into their sermons.
  • Pastors and church leaders are creating blogs and e-newsletters to regularly deliver current updates on ministry activities within the church, on mission trips, and in the community at-large.
  • Videos are being used to provide a virtual tour of churches.
  • A number of churches have begun to use the new, fastest-growing social media platform, Pinterest , to create buzz and generate more interest and excitement around their ministries.

Get a free sample or buy Social Media and Ministry by Rev. Dr. Kenneth Lillard from iTunes for additional insights into how ministries can more effectively use social media to carry out the Great Commission. 

What creative/innovative way is your church/ministry employing social media?

Until next time, remember, you can do all things thru Christ Jesus!

Stay Blessed!

Kenneth Lillard

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Pinterest and Faith – A New Way to Connect

There’s absolutely no question that Pinterest is 2012’s hottest, new player on the social media scene. It’s everywhere! Pinterest is the wildly popular, visual social network that people are using to share virtual pinboards of their favorite photos, videos, and links.

So, what exactly is Pinterest anyway? Think digital scrapbook. Think a new way to visually share your vision online. Pinterest is a digital bookmarking network designed to connect people through sharing their common interests. What makes Pinterest different, and so interesting, is that it is a visual social network, with emphasis on “visual”, that is easy to use and taps into one of social media’s newest trends – the interest graph.

Here are just a few facts about this breakout, new social network:

  • Unique visitors to Pinterest grew 400% from September to December 2011.
  • Pinterest drives more visitors to third-party websites than Google+, YouTube and LinkedIn. 
  • Launched in 2010, Pinterest already has over 10.4 million members. 
  • Pinterest gives faith communities a creative, new way to connect with people and share the Gospel. 

How can churches and ministries use Pinterest to help carry out the Great Commission? I’m glad you asked! Here a just a few examples:

  • Pin photos on Pinterest of people in your ministry serving others.
  • Create a digital scrapbook of your church’s daily life.
  • Use strong visuals to talk about Jesus.
  • Highlight events, sermon series, books, video, film, and music.
  • Small groups (youth, singles, women, et al) can create their own boards.
  • Highlight ministry missions.
  • Pinterest boards can be set up around twitter #hashtags inviting people to share images, photos, and blogs posts which can be pinned on Pinterest.
  • Boards can be set up around themes and seasons such as Lent and Easter.
  • Boards can be set up around faith topics and classes.

Pinterest is unique in that it appeals to the creative side of people. Many people are fed by the visual arts, and inspired to deeper engagement with God  by the things of beauty He has created.  Pinterest provides a creative way to showcase your ministry’s personality and aesthetic in a fresh manner. In addition, it is a fantastic way to share visual devotional resources. Pinterest definitely challenges you to think more deeply about visual design when sharing content via this new social networking platform.  We give Pinterest two thumbs up!

For more information on and examples of Pinterest check out the following:

Pinterest: A Beginner’s Guide to the Hot New Social Network – Mashable

Pinterest: Tutorial [VIDEO] – YouTube

Why Pinterest is 2012’s Hottest Website – cnn.com

Churches Reaching Out With Pinterest – Tim Schraeder

How to Use Pinterest for Your Ministry – Ministry Best Practices

Mars Hill Church on Pinterest

Faith board on Pinterest – Sami Price

The Ultimate Guide to Pinterest – Slideshare

10 Non-Profits Leveraging Pinterest for Social Good – Mashable

How is your ministry leveraging Pinterest to connect in new and exciting ways?

Until next time, remember, you can do all things thru Christ Jesus!

Stay Blessed!

Kenneth Lillard

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Faith And Social Media 2012 – The Year Ahead!

“For I know the plans I have for you”, declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11

Welcome to 2012! It’s slated to be an exciting, eventful year – what with the Summer Olympics in London, and presidential elections in France and the United States, just to mention a few! And it’s also expected to be an exciting year for social media and faith, as well!

As you begin the journey into the new year, it’s critically important to know where you’re going, and to have a good roadmap or GPS to help get you there.  Advanced planning is vital for social media success in 2012! 

Do you have your new Facebook Timeline profile ready or activated? What is your social media strategy for this year? How does it differ from last year’s? Do you have  LinkedIn or Google+ strategies for your ministry or church? Have you established daily, weekly, and monthly social media schedules? What are your S. M.A. R. T. social media goals for the year ahead? 

Right out the gate, here are some of the major trends to look for in 2012: 1) An increased usage of mobile devices, especially smart phones and tablet computers (like the iPad 2) – Make sure your website is mobile friendly! ;  2) Social networking will remain huge – Can you believe Facebook will surpass one billion (with a “b”) registered users this year?; 3) Expect to see increased usage of short videos; 4) Social media will continue to play a major role in social and political mobilizations and movements; 5) Trust, transparency, and respect will become even more important;  and 6) Look for an increased adoption of social media by non-profits, churches and other faith based organizations. 

As you engage your social networks in 2012 remember to listen to and learn from them. They have a lot to teach you! Harvest insights and share them.  Use smart metrics to measure your social media effectiveness (ROI). Always seek to be helpful and to add value to the individuals in your networks. Your vision is your compass. And remember, your focus should always be on Jesus! The challenge is adapting digital technology and social media to share the Gospel more creatively and effectively, both locally and globally!  And finally, don’t neglect in person fellowship!

The following are examples, suggestions, tips, and tools that, hopefully, you’ll find helpful on the social media and faith journey ahead:

What are your social media goals for the next twelve months? 

We’re wishing you success, prosperity, and all the very best in 2012!

Until next time, remember, you can do all things thru Christ Jesus!

Stay Blessed!

Kenneth Lillard

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