Content Strategy Example 1 :: Instagram

Today we’re starting a series of posts that will focus on good and timely content posted on various social media platforms. Hopefully this series will give you a better idea or new ideas to aid in your creation of content for your ministry’s social media accounts!

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The first one we’ll look at is Instagram.

First, when creating and scheduling content, it’s important to know who’s on that platform and when.

The Who

Social-Demographics-instagram
Photo from Sprout Social

Ages

53% of 18–29 year olds use Instagram.
25% of 30–49 year olds use Instagram.
11% of 50–64 year olds use Instagram.
6% of people 65+ use Instagram.

Gender

29% of online females use Instagram.
22% of online males use Instagram.

Education

31% of Instagram users have some college experience.
24% of Instagram users are college graduates.
23% of Instagram users are high school grads or less.

The When

A study was done in early 2015 by Latergramme to discover when people are engaging most on Instagram. The two following photos give us a picture of their findings.

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Photo from Huffington Post
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Photo from Huffington Post

The Examples

Here I’m going to give you a preview of three examples of good content, taken from social media accounts of ministries I follow!

Advertising for an Event

Sozo Children is a nonprofit ministry here in Birmingham that I enjoy following and learning more about. Below you’ll see a post they put up not long ago advertising for an upcoming missions opportunity.

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This is example is a good one because it provides efficient information, but also an emotional connection through the photo and the description of the trip.

Storytelling

Church of the Highlands, my home church, posts many of this type of post throughout each month. I always really enjoy reading them and I know my church family does, too.

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This example is great because it allows the viewer an inside look of Shelby’s story. With such a large congregation at Highlands, Instagram provides an opportunity for storytelling and the connection of people that we may not see otherwise! As a church family, we are able to celebrate with Shelby even though we don’t know her personally.

Encouragement

Incourage, a company owned by DaySpring, is a blog site for women. I follow this account on Instagram mostly for the encouraging content.

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This post is a good example in its simplicity, but also in its ability to catch the attention of the scroller with the graphic. The caption is short but meaningful and allows the viewer to meditate on the words because of the lack of length. It uplifts and adds a little love to their newsfeed.

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I hope this post has given you some tidbits on how to better your Instagram account! Feel free to leave any comments or questions below.

Sources: Sprout Social, Huffington Post,

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Loving People Through Marketing

I’ll never forget the day I sat down and shadowed the Social Media Coordinator at Church of the Highlands.

I went as an inquiry to figure out what her job looked like and to get a feel for if it was something that I wanted to pursue as a career, but she gave me so much more insight and more value in the conversation I had with her than a list of facts about a job.

To sum up my experience, she gave me a different perspective for what the heart of social media for a church or ministry is supposed to look like.

It wasn’t so much about the importance of advertising the events on time, or making sure that everything was done correctly, that followers were increasing at a certain speed, or posts were going up a certain amount of times per week; her heart was focused on something more eternal: making sure that she was loving people online.

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As she was telling me this, I kept thinking how I had never thought of it that way. I’ve always thought of it just as a “social media platform,” a space to advertise information. To gain a new perspective on the way God can move through something that the world has been so focused on the past few years and to realize the opportunity to speak to all the people that we want to tell about ministry in the place they already are was a game changer for me.

The fact that we can delve into that and comment on or like what’s happening in our community’s day-to-day is an opportunity that, if we’re not careful, we will miss out on.

Post encouragement to your community. Share with them truth in the middle of their week. Comment on a picture showing a rare off-day with their beautiful family. Let them know you’re thinking about and praying for them as they mourn the loss of a loved one. Like their status about getting the job they’ve been praying for.

Here’s a great example of a ministry that posts encouragement for their community on Instagram:

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No matter if you’re a big church or a small church, a big ministry or a small ministry, it means something to people. When you reach out and let them know that you’re living and loving alongside them as a community, you begin to mean something more to them than a place they go on Sunday mornings.

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So what does all of this look like when you’re advertising an event or wanting them to know what’s going on with a certain part of your ministry?

Enter storytelling.

It looks like making people that have already experienced these events and parts of your ministry feel included and important to the purpose of what you’re advertising in your space. Whether it’s a women’s conference at your church or upcoming sign-ups for a service opportunity, utilize the stories that God has given you through people in your church. Let them tell how God moved them and grew them through the experiences they had. Not only does this give you an opportunity to encourage those people and make them feel great about what’s going on in their life and letting them share with people through such a huge platform in a big way, you’re also going to get to show people who may not have experienced those things yet, or who may be on the edge of deciding to sign up or dive in to that part of your ministry, a glimpse of how their life could be changed for better.

Maybe someone is holding on to excuses that the enemy is putting in their mind of why they shouldn’t go to a Bible study this week. This may allow them to see how God changed a person who struggled with the same excuses and give them the extra push to sign up.

What better marketing is there than showing what God’s already done in someone else’s life to allow others to see what could be done in their lives, too? Don’t be afraid to ask people their stories. More times than not, people love to tell what joyful things they have going on in their lives and to have the opportunity to share it.

Here’s an example of one Church of the Highlands posted on Facebook recently:

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Use the stories God’s written in your church and ministry. Your people have stories to tell and they’re all beautiful. Use them to grow God’s kingdom, even if it looks like advertising for a women’s conference or a service opportunity. God gives people stories to be shared and it’s a huge opportunity for the Church to use them to make people’s visions clearer of what God can do in them and to offer hope.

I hope this post helps your vision of what loving people through marketing looks like! If you have any questions or comments, feel free to leave them in the box below!