Are you wondering how to attract new members? Here are some basic steps with ideas that can help.
Spiritual communities are volunteer organizations. The minister and staff need help to run everything. Volunteers are the key to attracting new members.
- It is imperative to find, train and keep volunteers to create and run a successful advertising ministry.
- Consider creating small groups and special interest committees to attract volunteers to specific outreach tasks. People tend to give more when doing things they believe in or love.
- Involve Uniteens!
Cultivate an Active Online Presence
- Maintain an updated, engaging website with a current calendar of events.
- Create a weekly radio show.
- Offer free e-book downloads from your Facebook and website.
- Use QR code links to your website on Facebook and all print material.
- Have a link or QR code to join your ministry’s text messaging service on all printed material and online for instant access to news and functions.
- Use social networking: LinkedIn, Meetup, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Write a blog and monthly email newsletter.
- Have congregants check in on Facebook at each service. Ask them to invite two people a week to church via Facebook.
- Use text messaging to engage congregants and remind them to bring friends to events.
- Use surveys on your Facebook page to create interest.
- Use livestream to become a satellite ministry worldwide.
- Create a short YouTube video showcasing sermons, concerts and other events.
Engage Your Community
- People are attracted to garage sales, potlucks, car washes, bake sales, used book sales, movie nights, dances, drumming circles, kirtans, plays, comedy nights, local art shows and weekend retreats. Guest speakers, musicians and classes can interest people in your community.
- Help the homeless and veterans in need. Collect winter coats and shoes for donation. Visit hospitals, home bounds and nursing homes.
- Sponsor a yoga class, twelve step groups or book club.
- Share your sanctuary with other spiritual groups. “Timeshare” facilities.
- Hold a “Truth on Tap” at your local pizza parlor once a month and invite the locals.
- Join clubs and organizations (on and offline) to become known in your community.
- Offer wedding, funeral and other services to your community.
Engage Your Guests
- Follow up with guests. Connecting with people quickly fosters long-term engagement.
- Use name tags. Offer stickers that say “no hugs” for the “touch sensitive.” Give welcome gifts and info packets including communication cards to learn more about your guest’s needs and desires.
- Follow up via email, mail, text messaging and “friend-ing” on social sites.
Promote Your Ministry
- Use direct mail, press releases and flyers.
- Post signage outside your spiritual community that is engaging, readable and recognizable.
- Rent a billboard!
- Check local public TV and radio for free ad space.
- Sell t-shirts, license plate frames, etc. to your congregants to foster community awareness. Use QR codes on these items!
What works for you? Let us know!