Today, you have the incredible opportunity to reach such a wide variety of people with so many different ways of communication. Websites, Instagram, Facebook, Snapchat, YouTube, the list goes on and on. We can go on and on about what is the best way to get our message across, but we can a

ll agree they all look better with great pictures. With so many different ways of communication, let’s talk about how to use them. From the 15 second views to the posts which last, let’s explore ways to make our church’s stories “last”.

So, sit down with your photo team and check off the top 5 photos that your ministry will need for this upcoming year…

[ 1 ] Behind the Scenes
Everyone LOVES these shots. Anytime you go to a concert and get backstage passes it gives you an inside look at what all goes on behind the scenes. It’s cool to see all that goes into making an event happen, and Instagram stories are a great way to show your staff and volunteers setting up for the weekend, or for the event. It gives people another level to connect and an avenue to see things that they would not normally see when they attend.

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[ 2 ] The Music & The Message
Take a look at church services going back all the way to the 1800’s, and even further. Why do you think music always precedes the message? Because it’s THAT important. Music spiritually and psychologically helps to open up your mind like nothing else. The type of music that a church has is important to show to someone who may be thinking of attending for the first time. After that, grab a shot of the pastor or speaker (preferably smiling) and throw in a quote from the message that week to post on Instagram. After all, The Word is the message that we, as a team, are all working to convey.

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[ 3 ] Youth
Ever heard the southern saying, “If Mama ain’t happy, nobody’s happy.”? Even though the grammar isn’t correct in that statement, the idea behind it is. And speaking as a Mama, I can tell you, I am happiest when my kids are happy. I get great joy out of seeing my kids really enjoy going to church and hearing all they are learning about in their walk with Christ. That in itself will bring me back anyplace. And seeing an amazing kids/youth ministry that your church has and what they are all doing is something you will want to do. (It’s also important to make sure that you have parents’ consent when posting a photo of their child anywhere online.)

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[ 4 ] Fashion
Expecting something a little bit deeper? The number one thing that new attendees go look for on a church’s website is. . . what are people wearing? Believe it or not, it tells a lot about a church. If it’s a low key skinny jeans and Adidas shoes type of church and the photos on the website and Instagram show stock images of people in a three piece suit, and vise versa, you may set up someone coming to your church for the first time feeling either too dressy or not dressy enough. And you never want to inadvertently set up anyone to feel out of place.

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[ 5 ] An Identity
I sat in on an incredible conference one time with a brand marketer who said something along the lines of, “Stop trying to sell a product, and start showing people an identity.” I couldn’t help but hear that as “Invest in people’s lives and their show their transformations.” Show people the joy of what a life with Christ looks like, even feels like. What it actually feels like to be surrounded by people who want to uplift you and walk with you, and the joy that comes from experiencing it.

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This year social media and an online presence is more important than ever to all of us. The Church is a part of us, and it is our calling to show it to others, right? We have been equipped and we have been called.

Above all else remember, project The Story, and don’t stop shooting!

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