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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’ – May 2013

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The month of May has been another exciting and busy time at SOCIAL MEDIA and MINISTRY NEWS, a daily online publication which brings you the very best information from across the web on all the latest developments, news, and views in the social media, faith, and technology space.

Many inspirational stories, chats, thought-provoking podcasts, and insightful opinion pieces have been shared in this month’s editions. Here are some of the very best featured stories:

Which May 2013 social media and ministry articles or blog posts would you recommend to our readers?

Don’t miss any of the latest developments in the church social media space.  Subscribe to SOCIAL MEDIA and MINISTRY NEWS!

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

Be Blessed,

Kenneth Lillard

 

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Social Media and Ministry 2012 – Trends and the Road Ahead

“For I am about to do something new. See, I have already begun! Do you not see it?” Isaiah 43:19

Can you believe we’re already halfway through 2012? Now is a great time to take a look at the state of social media and ministry today! And perhaps, more to the point, where it’s going in 2013 and beyond.

The ubiquity of the internet, social media, and digital devices has caused a paradigm shift in how we do church today. Now, when pastors call out scriptures in church, it’s not unusual to see half the congregation reach for their iPads. And the other half pull out their cell phones! Whew, what a sea change! Not very long ago, to be seen on a digital device in church brought on disapproving glares and, in some cases, verbal rebukes! Today, even the Bishop has an iPad in the pulpit!

And even though the Gospel message of love and deliverance remains the same, new and creative forms of communications, fellowship, and worship are emerging in our churches. New ways of engaging our faith, creating and distributing content, and interacting, both online and off, are surfacing daily. Internet church campuses are connected by the latest digital technology. Church is no longer just services one day a week, and Bible Study on Wednesday night. It has become a connected experience available and accessible 24/7, online and off.  Case in point, check out the International House of Prayer (IHOP)!

The state of social media and ministry today is clearly displayed all over my twitter timeline: “Come get your church on this morning with T.D. Jakes Internet Church @OMARSHIN…” “I’m so impressed @ how older members of church have got in on technology! #justsaying @Kadeciables…” “Learning how social media could enhance our church. Imagine if all your fb friends could be with you this Sunday? #nwlc12 @kelliag…” “The church doesn’t have a choice of IF it will use social media only HOW WELL it will use it. @donmillerag…” “One church I went to when @Teracarissa came to town, the pastor was calling ppl by their twitter handles. Social media church. @Gbemisok…” The handwriting is already on your Facebook wall!

So, here are some of the major trends emerging in social media and ministry for 2012:

  • Church is becoming available everywhere at anytime with apps on mobile digital devices like iPad 3’s and iPhones.
  • The central role of video continues to expand, particularly with the streaming of live and recorded sermons, services, and special events.
  • Digital technology and a variety of social media platforms provide smart channels for networking, collaborating, mobilizing, and creative, dynamic interaction.
  • Online chats are taking on an increasing significance, especially Google + hangouts, and Google+ on Air
  • Networked churches with Internet campuses continue to grow and innovate.
  • Creative initiatives like Global Media Outreach, Multiply Movement, and Mobile Ministry are having an expanded impact.
  • More churches are establishing Pinterest accounts.

As we look beyond 2012, there is clearly a place for an expanded role in the church for such cutting edge technologies as geo-locationmobile money, and AR. If popular music artists can include holograms as integral parts of their live  performances, why can’t the iChurch use similar technology to creatively share and communicate the incomparable Gospel of Jesus Christ!

These are only a few of the major trends happening in social media and ministry today. For more, and a look ahead, check out the following:

How is your ministry using social media to connect with others, creatively share the Gospel, and expand your influence?

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

Stay Blessed!

Kenneth Lillard

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Leading An Online Community

“Where there is no vision, the people perish…” Proverbs 29:18

With the advent of the Internet, and the emergence of social media platforms (such as Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, et al) online Christian groups and communities are springing up everyday! And effective leaders are needed to guide and manage these online networks.

Leading and managing online communities require three basic skill sets:

  • The ability to cast a vision.
  • The ability to nurture, listen to, and grow the community.
  • The ability to inspire the community.

The vision is key to any successful online community. Vision defines the desired or intended future state of that community in terms of its fundamental objective and/or strategic direction.  Without a vision, the online community has no objective or direction. It’s just out there, drifting aimlessly about, with no destination or goal. Plain and simple, without a vision the people perish! Proverbs 29:18.

A healthy online community is characterized by an active membership united by a shared purpose, with a passionate leader/facilitator, engaged in interlinking relationships between a significant percentage of its members.

The leader/facilitator is the face of the online community and should:

  • Engage the community.
  • Deliver a blog/ or media platform that’s useful to the community.
  • Create, gather, and share exceptional and relevant content (podcasts, videos, blogs, etc.).
  • Build relationships, especially with influencers.
  • Generate buzz.
  • Be passionate about the community.
  • Empower listening ability (e.g., using such tools as Google Alerts and Twitter Search) to ascertain the mood, needs and desires of the community.
  • Facilitate learning and education.
  • Grow the community.
  • Be an ambassador for the community.
  • Facilitate communications between members through comment sections, forums, chat, etc.
  • Be the guardian of the community.
  • Harvest insights and disseminate feedback from the community members.
  • Build actionable reports employing relevant metrics to measure success.
  • Keep the vision before the community.
  • Be real: authentic and transparent/ someone others can trust and relate to on a human level!

The online leader should be a good shepherd, constantly seeking guidance and direction from the Lord. 

What is your vision of an effective online community leader?

(Many thanks to Chris BroganRachel HappeMaria Ogneva , and Seth Godin in his book Tribes for some of the information and ideas cited in this post.)

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

God Bless,

Kenneth Lillard

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