Pastor Livingstone, I presume? - Word&Way

Pastor Livingstone, I presume?

“Expedition: Africa” is an eight-part series on The History Channel that attempts to recreate the extraordinary journey made by jour­nalist Henry Stan­ley to locate Dr. David Livingstone in 1871.

The world seems a lot smaller because of tech­nology. But many churches are excellent at hiding in plain sight.

Here are 70 ways for your church to be more visible:

A church Web site (1) doesn’t re­quire thousands of dollars and eye-popping effects, but the one you have should be accurate and updated (2-3). Are your worship times listed (4)? Is it easy to find phone, e-mail and staff contact information (5-7)? The site URL should also be an easy-to-say, easy-to-re­member address (8) that is in­cluded on stationery, signs, advertisements and business cards (9-12).

Calendars can be a good way to keep members and guests informed. (13) is $60 annually and can be used to send re­min­ders and invitations (14-15). Goo­gle Cal­en­dar ( is free, with less options (16).

How easy is it to find your church? and (17-18) allow you to print maps, post maps to your site and allow visitors to your site to print individualized directions (19-21).

If people contact the church after hours, is there a recording that is short, engaging and easy to understand (22)? Is there a contact for emergencies (23)? Is there an easy-to-re­mem­ber e-mail address (24)? Does the staff respond quickly to phone and e-mail messages (25)?

Utilizing other Web sites is also helpful. Post church videos to sites like and (26-27) and then pub­licize them (28). Be sure that ads or related videos do not offend watchers.

Facebook (29) is the best-known of the so­cial net­wor­king sites. Use it to form groups to link church members, post news and more. (30-31).

Starting a blog, podcast or Twitter account (32-34) can help your church  com­municate throughout the week, not just Sun­days. Use safeguards to keep inappropriate messaging from taking place.

To reach those not using the In­ter­net, you can purchase ads and use press releases (35-36) in local newspapers, television and radio. Keep an up-to-date list of contacts (37). Media know the difference be­tween ads and stories, so find an engaging hook to pro­mote or report an event (38). Get to know local me­dia contacts and their sched­ules to help your stories be covered (39-40). Furnish a good contact person and pictures (41-42). Check ad­vertising to make sure it in­cludes complete details and contacts (43-44).

Is there someone who can make attractive and easy-to-read flyers for church events (45)? Make sure they are accurate and avoid details that someone not familiar will not understand (46). Keep a list of local businesses, organizations, gyms, stores and other locations that will allow you to post flyers (47). Utilize community Web sites, your local library and local bulletin boards (48-50). Write letters to the paper when appropriate. (51)

Keep members informed through newsletters, announcements, bulletin boards and e-newsletters (52-55). Not only will they know, but they can provide word of mouth as they tell others and share your publications (56). Avoid terms and abbreviations not known by those be­yond your church.

Sponsor a contest, financial class, community garage sale, scavenger hunt (57-60), or events such as a concerts, mo­vies, parents night out or walk /run (61-65). Print business cards, coupons and other handouts that members can share with others (66-68), because per­sonal invitations are the most effective (69).

Finally, let your congregation’s love and helpfulness be qualities that speak louder than your words (70).

Ken Satterfield was formerly a media specialist and is currently Word&Way’s advertising/marketing coordinator.