I want a ton of people to show up at Church of the Highlands on Easter weekend. Easter is the Super Bowl of the church world. We have the greatest story to tell in all of the world, and we want as many people as possible to hear it.
Every week, I’m posting a series called “This is How We Do It” to describe how Church of the Highlands does what we do.
So, how do we market our church to the masses for Easter weekend? Hear are five things we’re doing at Church of the Highlands:
1) Attractional Strategy
If your church is doing an egg hunt, the Easter bunny is walking around campus, you’re providing a photographer to the church, or anything like that, you’re using the attractional strategy of church marketing to get people to come to Easter weekend. Here at The Highlands, we use the attractional strategy and it works for us.
This year, we’re having another helicopter egg drop. We did it last year, and it was a huge success. Soon, I’ll have a special post just to explain the egg drop. In addition to the helicopter dropping thousands of eggs from the sky, we will have a bunch of bounce houses, carnival games, etc. (By the way, if you want to pre-register your child for the egg drop, click here.)
People in our community love this stuff, and so do our church members. A major key is to get peoples’ contact information at the event so we can follow-up with them later and invite them to come to our church.
2) Door Knocking
This is old-school, but it works. You want to know why I believe in door-to-door church marketing? I had an epiphany when we were preparing the launch of Church of the Highlands. It was during the 2012 presidential campaign between Mitt Romney and Barack Obama.
Everyone knew the key to the election was to win Ohio. The polls were neck-and-neck going into that first Tuesday of November in 2012. The day before the election, the Romney campaign knocked on 75,000 doors while the Obama team knocked on 376,000 doors (source). Obama won the state by 166,214 votes (source). He out-knocked Romney by 301,000 doors the day before the election.
If a group works their tail-off to knock on doors to get votes to elect someone for four years, how much more effort should we put it into inviting someone to life in Christ that lasts an eternity? Our church has one big “Hit the Streets” door knocking time per quarter. The next time we’re doing this is this coming weekend.
3) Direct Mail
We use Outreach.com to send direct mail to people in our community to advertise for our church. Click here to see one going out next week. After word of mouth, I guarantee you the number one way people have come to our church is via mailers.
We use our graphic designer to produce a customized piece for our church, work with an Outreach.com advisor both via email and over the phone, and strategically pick-out the locations where our mailers are sent.
Here is an interesting mail stat:
In over 80% of homes the person in the household responsible for collecting and sorting mail will collect the mail at their first opportunity. And, once the mail is brought into the home, 80% will sort the mail immediately while 18% will sort it later that day. (source)
4) Social Media & Overall Web Promotion
We use Facebook ads because it is simple and dirt cheap. The week of Easter, we’ll spend $25 per day to promote our Easter worship experiences. With Facebook advertising, you can pick locations via zip code or city, and all kinds of other details.
We target all people in our zip code and in the Harrison and Ooltewah communities of Hamilton County, Tennessee. Honestly, this is the least effective marketing strategy we have used, in terms of measurable return on investment, but it is so inexpensive that we use it some for big weeks of promotion.
5) Word of Mouth
Of course, the number one way to promote a church is via word of mouth. Click here to read a great post about “18 Word of Mouth Marketing Tips for Churches” by Marcus Neto.
The way we do word of mouth marketing in our church is that we provide the mailer that we send to our community, and have a bunch of extras printed, and encourage our regular attendees and members to take a bunch of them and invite their F-R-A-N (friends, relatives, associates, and neighbors).
Thom Rainer, in his book The Unchurched Next Door, notes that “82% of the unchurched are at least somewhat likely to attend church if invited.”
This is how we let others know about our church so they will come and learn about our risen Savior. Do you have any tips you’d like to add? Let me know by commenting below.