Posts tagged ‘facebook’

11 Ways to Use Facebook in Your Ministry

“Social media essentially is a category of online media where people are talking, participating, sharing, networking, and bookmarking online” (Ron Jones).

Like it or not social media is here to stay. It’s how a huge number of people connect for pleasure, business, education, and information.

The information for this post was researched and blogged September 7, 2010.

  • 1 out of 8 couples married in the U.S. last year met via social media. (Technology and Community)
  • In the near future we will no longer search for products and services they will find us via social media. (Technology and Community)
  • 1 in 6 higher education students are enrolled in online curriculum. (Technology and Community)
  • Digg and Newsvine (2 social news sites) allow readers to not only read but also comment on the articles.

“Social networking now accounts for 11 percent of all time spent online in the US.”  175 million people log in to Facebook each day. And that number is growing exponentially. In fact 96% of GenY’s have joined a social network.” (Technology and Community)

And it’s not just the youth who are online. 1/3rd of Facebook users are in the 35-54 age range.

As you can see, Facebook is one handy tool to have in your ministry toolbox. Below are 11 ways you can use Facebook to connect with and impact people in your ministry.

1. Accountability. Use Facebook to stay on target with goals. When feeling a little shaky ask for prayer and ideas on how to keep motivated. Other’s insights can be helpful in staying the course.

2. Advertising. It is easy to send an event reminder or advertise about an upcoming event on Facebook. Your alert won’t become one of many messages in a crowded email inbox. Plus you can easily include pictures and links without affecting loading time.

3. Closes the Gap. Facebook allows you to converse with friends of friends, thus possibly widening your sphere of influence. On Facebook age is not immediately apparent, an issue, or a liability. In a face-to-face conversation people from different decades might not converse well or easily. But on Facebook it’s ok to be friends with those that are younger and older.

4. Connect. You can get to know others by reading their status updates, checking out their photos, and reading their comments to others. You get to know them on their turf.

5. Equal Opportunity. Facebook allows all sorts of people in all sorts of situations to connect. There is equal opportunity connection for the very shy … slow thinkers (like me) … chronically ill … very talkative … and … service members. You can participate on Facebook if you … live in a different city/country than your friends/family …. work a lot or have opposite shifts from others … and/or have a disability that makes it difficult to communicate easily face-to-face.

6. Information. Share links for useful resources as they relate to your ministry. You Tube, websites, blogs, and news articles are a few examples.

7. Respond. Share an answer in response to someone’s Status Update. I.e. Give tips on potty-training or training for a bike ride across the USA. Advise us where to stay in Monterrey or Saigon. Please tell AC what to do with squash paste!

8. Share Yourself. Facebook is an ideal place to share who you are via photos, links, your blog/website, commentary, and your thoughts whether they are silly or serious. Sharing your likes and dislikes helps others know you as a real person. You become accessible.

9. Small Groups. Extend your learning time outside of small groups. Discuss homework answers. Give explanations on topics you didn’t have time for in class. Use Facebook to go deeper into topics or people’s beliefs/ideas/questions. Explore tangents. Use Facebook in creative ways like Facebook as if you are a character from the study.

10. Thanks or Birthday Greetings. The snail mail thank you or birthday card is nice to get, but many don’t ever send one. With Facebook it is easy, fast and free to send birthday, thanks and other greetings to others in a timely manner! There is no excuse to not encourage teachers, students, and pastors with a Facebook message … Thanks for your helpI appreciate a job well done … or … Your insightful teaching gave me much to think about. Let people know you care about them.

11. Tip Exchange. You don’t have to write a paper or even fret over grammar to share your tips with others. You know something? Then tell us. I.e. How to keep a devotional time fresh. 5 ways to Get to Church On Time and Sane. Put this information in the notes section for easier reading.

These are some ways to use Facebook to communicate with others. This sharing of ourselves through ideas, feelings, resources and encouragement leads to better relationships. As we improve and grow our relationships with one another, our ministry also grows and improves.

Your Turn

  • How have you used Facebook in your ministry? Did it work out well or was it a flop?
  • What idea(s) would you add to this list?
  • How are you going to use Facebook this week in your ministry?

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Facebook Adventure Beginning

Hugging friendsSince joining Facebook I’ve had a small flurry of emails letting me know that . . . .

  • “Jene” has confirmed me as a friend
  • “Jon” added me as a friend
  • “Jasmine” requests that I be her friend
  • “Jamal” asks that I confirm or deny that we are related

Yesterday I received an email that made me scream out loud, “No Way!” It was a friend request from a classmate in high school. I haven’t talked to her in, well, too many decades. I look forward to catching up and hearing about her life since our last reunion party which was probably for the 15th year.

As I looked over her friend list, I saw the name and picture of Mickey, one of my best high school buds. I had lost contact with her many decades ago too. Of course I put in my own friend request late last night.

  • At 6:45 am I checked to see if she had responded yet. NO.
  • At 7:10 am, still NO.
  • By 7:30 am she hadn’t friended me yet.

Okay. I’m turning off the technology and getting on with my real life. I have a few things to do before going to a conference with some work mates. (Doesn’t that sound so professional?)

But wait, one last look. But alas, still NO email friend confirmation. This waiting is gonna be hard on my curiosity. And my imagination because I’m thinking, “Maybe she doesn’t want to be my friend and that’s why I haven’t heard from her yet.” Yes, part of me realizes that it is still before 8 am in her part of the world.

I don’t do rejection well. It seems like Facebook has the potential to bring a lot my way. What am I setting myself up for?

BTW – anyone from Peter Pond High School know where Char is? I’d like to send her a friend request too.

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60 Acts of Kindness, Intentional & Random to do my 60th year

The Finish Date.

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