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Social networking and the Church


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Having an online ministry is quickly becoming mandatory for the Catholic Church. This presentation provides a basic understanding of Social Networks and how the Church can leverage these tools to expand and grow its ministry.

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Social networking and the Church

  1. 1. Social Networking and the Church<br />Michael A. Stone<br />Internet Product Manager<br />Liturgical Publications Inc<br />
  2. 2. About This Presentation<br />This presentation isn’t about building a Facebook Fan Page<br />This presentation isn’t about whether you should have a social network<br />This presentation is about why every church needs an Online Ministry<br />This presentation is about increasing mass participation, stewardship and ultimately…survival<br />
  3. 3. What is the oldest and largest Social Network?<br />Social Networking is not new.<br />
  4. 4. Is one of these the oldest social network?<br />Social Networking is not new.<br />
  5. 5. Social Networking is not new.<br />The oldest is religion.<br />The largest is Christianity.<br />
  6. 6. What is a Social Network?<br />Connects people together<br />Fosters relationships<br />Promotes common, shared values<br />Sounds like the Catholic Church to me<br />
  7. 7. Social Networking is not new, but something new is changing the way we communicate.<br />
  8. 8. That something is the Internet and related technology.<br />
  9. 9. If You Don’t Believe Me…<br />“The new technologies are not only changing the way we communicate, but communication itself”<br />“This means of spreading information and knowledge is giving birth to a new way of learning and thinking, with unprecedented opportunities for establishing relationships and building fellowship.”<br />MESSAGE OF HIS HOLINESS POPE BENEDICT XVIFOR THE 45th WORLD COMMUNICATIONS DAY <br />Truth, Proclamation and Authenticity of Life in the Digital Age<br />
  10. 10. The Internet is Only a Communication Tool<br />The internet is a communication tool just like<br /><ul><li>Television
  11. 11. Radio
  12. 12. Printed word
  13. 13. Our collective voices</li></ul>The internet is neither good nor bad<br />What’s good or bad is how people use it<br />
  14. 14. The Internet is Changing<br />Expectationsabout communication<br />Howpeople communicate<br />Wherepeople communicate<br />When people communicate<br />
  15. 15. The Next Generation of Parishioners are Growing Up Online<br />The Internet has replaced paper and pen<br />They text, not talk<br />E-mail is even old school—Facebook is current.<br />
  16. 16. The Next Generation of Parishioners are Growing Up Online<br />Adapting and embracing this change is the challenge the church is facing.<br />The church must adapt to the new communication styles or be left behind.<br />
  17. 17. The Internet is Now Leading the Way<br />
  18. 18. Service Attendance<br />
  19. 19. Expectationsabout communicationHowpeople communicate<br />The Information Super Highway is now a two-way street<br />Its about:<br />Engagement<br />Dialog<br />Active Participation<br />
  20. 20. Expectationsabout communicationHowpeople communicate<br />Today’s local church doesn’t have communication models built for today’s reality.<br />Information overload, pressure to keep up, global neighborhoods, mass distrust of big business (and organized religion).<br />We moved past the industrial age, through the information age, to the interconnected age.<br />Social media is now a significant piece of two-way communication in today’s society.<br />
  21. 21. Expectationsabout communicationHowpeople communicate<br />Ground Rules for Communication:<br />Not interruption, but permission<br />Not chaos, but clarity<br />Not corporate copy, but peer reviews<br />Not user privacy, but user control<br />Not inform, but inspire<br />Not integrate, but elevate<br />
  22. 22. Expectationsabout communicationWherepeople communicate<br />“Wherever/Whenever On their…”<br />On their computer, phone, iPad, tablet, etc.<br />Via broadband, Skype, cellular, wi-fi<br />
  23. 23. Expectationsabout communicationWhenpeople communicate<br />“Whenever they want”<br />There has been a lot of complaints about the end of the ‘work week’ in this 24X7,always on, world.<br />But think of the possibilities if parishioners were always connected to their faith and their church 24X7<br />
  24. 24. A closer look at wherepeople communicate online<br />Open (“Public”) Social Networking Sites<br />Closed (“Your”) Social Networking Sites<br />Marketing & promotion focus<br />Engagement second<br />Two-way communication but typically directed<br />Open by default, should be able to shut the doors at least partially<br />Search engine accessible<br />Engagement<br />True two-way communication<br />Secured by default, you decide how far to open the doors<br />Typically search engine inaccessible<br />
  25. 25. A closer look at wherepeople communicate online<br />Open Services<br />Facebook<br />Twitter<br />YouTube<br /><br />Many, many others<br />Ning, Eventbrite, Issuu<br />Closed (“Your”) Services<br />WeGather<br />Church Community Builder<br />CircleBuilder<br />The City<br />MyChurch<br />
  26. 26. .<br />Mom’s Group<br />(anyone can<br />join)<br />Invite members<br />to join<br />(give them the key)<br />Festival<br />Planning <br />Group<br />(ask to join)<br />They receive access to your “lobby” <br />and general membership group.<br />Finance<br />Group<br />(by invitation<br />Only)<br />
  27. 27. The Challenge is Engagementnot the technology or even resources<br />You have people with the required skills<br />It does necessarily mean more work.<br />You can afford the cost<br />You need to communicate with you parishioners where they are and how they now expect. This will keep them parishioners!<br />
  28. 28. LPi can help You face the challenge<br />Marketing & Promotion<br /> Seek And Find<br />Online directory of churches and the advertisers who support them<br />WeConnect<br />Website builder<br />Pre-built templates to choose from<br />Easy to use, yet completely expandable<br />Grows with you<br />Parishioner Engagement<br />WeGather<br />Where you church connects online: a secure, closed network<br />WeShare<br />Online donations via ACH and Credit card, donation management, pledging, one time or regular donations<br />
  29. 29. Thank You!<br />For more information, please go to<br />Michael A. Stone<br /><br />262-207-2519<br />