Where do you start when you are thinking about bringing your church into the world of Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, etc? The first thing we need to do is go into these digital realms and spend some time looking around and getting to know the culture.

In the Rio Texas Annual Conference, we are investing time and money into Cultural Competency training. In the blending of the Southwest Texas and Rio Grande Annual Conferences, we are taking time to ensure that we understand our cultural differences. We are learning how to better communicate and work together realizing that there are some differences in our norms, expectations, and unspoken rules. Some amount of training helps us to better understand one another and work together.

I think that, if we want to reach our mission field, we need to spend some effort working on our e-cultural competency. Nearly every space in the digital realm has its own set of spoken and unspoken rules, norms and expectations.

Let’s take the global village of Instagram as an example. I don’t recall ever reading, as I signed up for Instagram, anything about how many pictures to post and how often. Yet, the unspoken culture in this space is that it is not cool to post 10 baby pictures in a row. You post one. If you violate that norm, you won’t be kicked off Instagram, but people will likely “unfollow” you. They may even leave a snarky comment before doing so but likely, they will just stop following. They will stop listening. That is the currency of the social media world.

As you look around and get to know the social media culture, here are some other resources to get started:

10 Facebook Tips for Churches

Seven Facebook Growth Hacks for Churches

Getting Your Church Started with Facebook – Church Marketing Sucks

Getting Started with Twitter – Church Juice

Is Your Church on Instagram? – Elexio

20 Great Ways to Use Instagram at Your Church – The Creative Pastor

Pinterest for Churches? – Internet Toolbox for Churches

 

Need help? E-mail us: media@riotexas.org