Read This First
If you’re checking out Church Marketing Sucks for the first time you may want to start with some of our big picture entries. We won’t say they’re the final word, but they’ll make a good beginning. For more on what Church Marketing Sucks is and who’s behind it, head over to the about section.
A great place to start is some of the resources we’ve put together:
Outspoken is a collection of insights and wisdom from more than 60 church communications professionals. It features short chapters on every topic you need, including marketing, branding, leadership, creativity, technology and more.
It took only a week to make Pastor Jeff dangerous. A team of church communication pros descended on his church to share their knowledge, a venture known as Creative Missions. The status quo is now endangered. Is your church ready to be dangerous?
In partnership with Creative Missions, this booklet features 19 articles on the basics of church marketing, including design, writing, sound, video, web, social media and several articles on big picture strategy for beginners.
Next you can check out blog posts from our archive going back to 2004:
- What is Marketing? – Marketing is the study and practice of better, faster, cheaper and friendlier.
- Is Marketing a Dirty Word? – Marketing happens: Don’t blame marketing when it’s really just bad marketing.
- We Are Evangelists – Church marketing isn’t just a business skill applied to the church, it’s the great commission.
- Is Church Growth the Highway to Hell? – A series exploring the ups and downs of church growth.
- Is Marketing in the Bible? – The Biblical take on marketing can go either way, but is that really the point? People still need to be reached. Let’s reach them.
- Church: Why Bother? – A defense of church.
- Why We Use Sucks – A defense for our use of the word ‘sucks.’
Practical Ideas & Tips on Getting Started
- Where Do I Begin? – General, big picture ideas for how to dive into marketing.
- Church Marketing Plan – An online marketing tutorial from the United Methodist Church.
- Purpose, Values, Vision & Mission – Decoding the buzzwords and making them work.
- Inspiration or Invitation? – Is your marketing internal or external?
- Little Guys Can Do Big Things Too – Advice and encouragement for the small church (i.e., the rest of us).
- Lessons In Not Sucking – A 9-part series covering all kinds of communications topics.
- Getting Started – A series of interviews with church comm pros about how to get started.
- Brands Are Bigger Than Logos – Why your brand is more than just a logo.
- Be Your Own Church – Be the church God wants you to be, not the church down the street.
- What’s in a Name – Picking a church name.
- Branding & the Local Church – How branding helps set your church apart even when you’re working with other churches.
- Tips for Writing an Effective Press Release – Six tips to make your press releases more effective.
- What Do You Do When Your Church Is Attacked in the Media? – Lessons in responding to media attacks from Ed Young & Fellowship Church’s experience.
- How Pastors Should Deal with Reporters – Sarah Palin’s pastor shares lessons in how to respond to journalists.
- Fair Use and Your Church – A three-part series on copyright issues.
- Why Can’t Christians be Original? – Exploring copyright and originality in the church.
- Church Copycats – The church needs to stop being a copycat.
- How to Design a Church Logo – A step-by-step guide to how you should approach designing a church logo.
- 5 Tools Church Designers Need – A series on basic tools graphic designers need to survive in the church.
- Why Criticism Is a Good Thing – Navigating the art of critical review and why the pastor isn’t always right.
- The Art of the Critique – A guide for churches to properly critique a designer’s work.
- Comic Sans is NOT Okay – Basic tips on how to use fonts better.
- How Technology Can Help Your Church – In the end, tech is just a tool to connect people.
- Church Websites 101 – A 12-part series on the basics of church websites.
- Facebook for Churches – A series on how to make the most of Facebook for your church.
- It’s Time To Get Your Sermons Online – A guide to posting church sermons online.
- To Text Or Not To Text – A guide to exploring mobile technology for your church.
- Web 2.0 For Your Church – An 8-part series on what web 2.0 means for your church, from video to photos to cheap software.
- Keyword Advertising for Churches – A case study in using Google’s AdWord to promote your church.
Writing & Editing
- Copy Matters – A 13-part series exploring the ins and outs of writing copy.
- Starting a Church Style Guide – Basic steps to starting a style guide.
- Creating a Church Style Guide – Follow along as our associate editor creates a style guide for his church.
- How to Write Scannable Copy for the Web – Quick tips for writing online copy.
- Church Vocabulary Lesson – Common church vocab to avoid.
You’ve just dipped your toe in a pool of church marketing content. Dive into our archives—which go back to 2004—for much, much more.
For even more church marketing help you can turn to our nonprofit parent, the Center for Church Communication (CFCC). As our umbrella organization, CFCC has a number of projects to help church communicators:
- Church Marketing Lab – Show your work, share your feedback.
- Job Board and Freelance Board – Find or complete the winning team or project.
- Church Marketing Directory – Tools, resources and companies that help the church communicate better.
- Events Calendar – Church communication related events.
- Local Lab – Meet up with fellow church communicators.
- Firestarter – Celebrating churches that have sparked brilliant communication.