Have you ever stumbled across a church website, interested in learning more about the pastor and his preaching style, and have wanted to listen to a sample of his sermon? Of course you have. You’re not alone. In fact, I would say you and I are in the majority. However, we often don’t see any sermon snippets, full sermons or a video about the pastor.
I want to give you all four reasons why adding media to your website is pro, not a con.
1) It will help in the lead/conversion ratio. I don’t want to look at church as a business. It definitely is not. However, it does mean something when potential visitors to your church, who may be new to the area or are looking for a new church home, access your website to learn more about who you are, what you are all about, and get a taste of your vision. We can process only so much through copy. It is paramount to offer a glimpse of your pastor through his sermons on Sunday. Potential visitors not only want to know what you have to offer them and their families, but also want to hear how you deliver God’s Word.
Many churches do this and do it well. They have pages on their sites dedicated to sermons. It is easy to setup through a tool such as SoundCloud, and you can make it look as if it’s a part of your website. Do it.
2) It will make it easy for members to catch up. OK. I missed our sermon last Sunday. My wife and I were in the nursery keeping the babies. The left shoulder of my shirt was covered in slobber. Shame on me for not using a burp cloth. Fortunately, my church posts all of our pastor’s sermons online each Monday. That allows me, as a member, to listen to Pastor Andy, although I was serving in the nursery on Sunday morning. It is how I stay engaged in what is being preached every Sunday morning should I happen to be serving elsewhere. The same can be said for vacation; the same use case applies. As an active member of my church, I want to be able to catch up so I’m able to pick up right where our pastor left off the Sunday prior. Who watches the next episode of a favorite TV show without watching what’s on the DVR first? Exactly. No one.
3) It will help your members in their own personal Bible study. Believe it or not, I regularly refer back to what my pastor has preached. There have been countless times I’ve written notes to friends and family members and have included thoughts on Scripture from my preacher and his expositions on the Text. I also have found myself reading a passage of Scripture and referring back to my pastor’s commentary on the subject. If you don’t have the ability or bandwidth from a personnel standpoint to add video to your website, at least consider adding the pastor’s manuscript and/or sermon audio.
4) It keeps your members engaged. Not only is adding media to your website valuable to your members by allowing them to listen to or watch sermon audio and video, but it can add to community engagement for the group of believers. Think about photos and what they can do to engage your members. Congregants want to see new members so they can congratulate them and help them get plugged into a small group. They want to see people who recently have been baptized and help them on their journey as new believers. They want to see what their children did at the most recent VBS or Disciple Now weekend. They want to see how other church members are leading lost souls to Christ on mission trips.
Adding media to your church website isn’t something you can afford to overlook. You should consider it to be an opportunity to share with others what your church is all about.
How are you using media effectively on your church website? What are some of the tools you use to make this happen?