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Coke or Pepsi? Whichever camp you fall in, there’s no denying the power of a content marketing campaign. A few years ago, I was on a church youth trip when we stopped in at a gas station. The majority of the students left that gas station with a bottle of Coke in hand. They didn’t all just love Coke, but because Coke had recently launched its “Share a Coke” campaign, the students loved finding their names on the bottles. They shared pictures on social media, visited Coke’s website, and it became somewhat of a theme for the trip. Coke had found a new, engaging way to content market.
While that’s great for Coke, what does that mean for your church? How can you create content that engages people and causes them to take action? Below we’ll take a look at what church website content marketing is, why it matters, and how to go about making it work for your church.
What Is Content Marketing?
Put simply, content marketing is using creative avenues to get your message out. Chances are, you’re already utilizing some form of church website content marketing without even knowing it.
To take it a step further, according to the Content Marketing Institute, “Content marketing is a strategic marketing approach focused on creating and distributing valuable, relevant, and consistent content to attract and retain a clearly-defined audience — and, ultimately, to drive profitable customer action.”
Sounds too businessy for church, right? When churches use content marketing, they’re not pushing for “profitable customer action.” They’re hoping to attract and offer people spiritual guidance. Think of it as driving Christian growth. If someone is completely new to Christianity and new to your church, you should be providing them with content that helps them grow spiritually, get plugged in, and take that next step on your church website. The same applies to your regular members, your engaged members, and even your most mature members.
Why Church Website Content Marketing Matters
Next, it’s important that you not only understand what church website content marketing is but why it matters. Above all, content marketing matters because your message matters. The Gospel is always worth sharing. This idea is displayed in Scripture over and over and is even part of the Greatest Commandment: “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations…” (Matthew 28:19).
Church website content marketing is about creating awareness about the Gospel and about your church in ways that meet people where they’re at. Your content should have the potential to change lives just like the rest of your ministry. It’s about sharing the message of love Jesus taught.
When you boil it down, effective content is two things: targeted and valuable.
Targeted content reaches specific people in specific places. This means you have to know your audience and know where they gather their information. A successful content marketing strategist will do their research for the sake of creating content that is specific, helpful, and accessible to their targeted audience.
Your church marketing strategy might as well be non-existent if you are simply creating content for the sake of creating content. Make sure that the content you create is created for a purpose. Ask yourself these questions:
- Is this helpful for my audience?
- Will it benefit the person who engages with this?
- Is it relevant?
How to Create a Content Marketing Strategy for Your Church
Lastly, this all sounds great, but what does it look like to create and apply a church website content marketing strategy?
Types of Church Website Content
First, you must decide what types of content would be the most beneficial for your church. Here are a few of the most popular types of church content to include on your church website:
While this can seem overwhelming, the good news is you don’t need every type, and not all of it has to be different. Pull quotes from a sermon and turn it into a graphic, break it up into a short podcast series, and turn it into a blog post. This is called repurposing content, and it can make your to-do list feel a lot smaller.
Choose Your Platform:
Once you’ve created your content, it’s important that you choose the right platform to get your content out there and lead people to next steps. This can be done by sharing your blog post and sermons on your church website, posting on social media, or sending out an email blast. There are a lot of different platforms out there, but again, it’s important that you learn where your targeted audience is, and put your content there.
Be Consistent with Church Content Marketing
Next, church website content marketing is only effective if you are continuously and consistently publishing content. If your last blog post on your church website is from 2015, chances are you aren’t getting much traffic to your website. Make a plan and stick to it. Once you start doing this consistently, you’ll be able to better gauge what works and what doesn’t.
Set Measurable Goals
Finally, it’s crucial that you set measurable goals for your church content marketing. What is it that you are trying to accomplish? Do you want to attract more church visitors? Are you wanting to drive traffic to your church website or social media pages? Whatever it is that you are trying to do, make sure that you set a measurable goal and adjust as needed.
Whether you’re new to church communications or have been doing it for years, we know that this can feel overwhelming. However, we also want you to know that you don’t have to do it alone. Check out the Church Relevance Course Shop for training to equip your church staff, or visit our partners at
to learn more about church website strategies.