I remember vividly going to a conference in the early 2000’s that was simply titled, “Theology After Google.” During this riveting multi day conference, we discussed everything from the speed of dial-up and the speed of God, to the impact of Twitter (Instagram hadn’t been invented yet) on churches and ministries. One specific breakout session that was particularly interesting was on the topic of ministry branding. The session ended with a fairly heated discussion about whether or not Jesus would have a brand and what he would use social media branding for.
Years later, this conversation has become even more important. Your audience needs to see you, hear you, and connect to you. Here are 3 suggestions for why your brand matters more to your audience than you think it does.
- They Need to See You: Coca-Cola is one of the most recognizable brands in the world and it didn’t get that way by accident. The first rule in Coca-Cola’s marketing is to make sure that they are visible. They want to make sure that people know they exist. This means that they spend millions of dollars on getting their logo seen, giving away free Coca-Cola, and purchasing advertisements on any platform that they can. All of this in the name of a sugary, fizzy, beverage.
Your brand matters more than you think it does because your mission is to share the Good News of Jesus to the world. If your brand isn’t visible, then no one knows that you exist and no one can access this Good News that you have for them. You have to commit to making your brand visible to as many people as possible. As Jesus taught in a parable, to cast a large net. Visibility is casting the biggest net that you are capable of so that your brand will be seen and that your message can be shared. They need to see you.
2. They Need to Hear You: The proverbial saying is that a picture is worth a thousand words. This applies exponentially to your social media ministry. The posts, reels, and stories that you share tell a story. They let your audience know your voice and give them insight into who you are and what you exist to accomplish. This also allows them to get a glimpse of what you have to offer to their lives. Your brand is your voice. It speaks for you. It says that you are interested in them, eager to listen, and open to offering help. It tells them that you are a familiar face in a social media landscape full of strangers. It offers to them your story, connected to their story, which ultimately leads to the greatest story.
And make no mistake, there are competing voices out there. Voices that are offering cheap solutions that offer no real lasting help. Voices that are loudly yelling in their face, telling them that they need to buy the newest product, have the life that their neighbor has, and continue to jealously covet all the things that they do not have. Your voice in the midst of this sea of noise must ring as loudly with the offer of, “the Way, the Truth and the Life.” Your brand matters more than you think it does because your voice might be the only voice that they hear today on social media offering real hope. They need to hear you.
3. They Need to Connect With You: The inventor of the Facebook like button has been published numerous times sharing that the like button was created to keep people connected to their platform. The simple science on this is that likes, shares, and other engagements give the user a dopamine rush. This was built into the platforms to keep users coming back for more content and drive advertisement dollars and company expansion. Although this can certainly seem like the dark side of social media, what it shares in a positive way is the nature of human being’s deep need for connection with each other.
Your brand matters more than you think it does because there are real people who need to connect with other real people. There are lost sheep that Jesus is on a mission to bring back to the fold. We get to be part of this in our ministries as we connect in authentic ways with authentic people on the other side of the screen. As has been recognized in many books and articles in the past few years, people are more connected and yet more lonely than they have ever been. We have the opportunity to leverage our ministry brand to connect with people so that they are not alone any longer. They need to connect with you.
Your brand matters more than you think that it does because your audience needs to see you, hear you, and connect with you. Don’t lose this “why.” Allow this “why” to drive you even further in your branding and in your mission. Pursue these 3 opportunities for the good of the Kingdom and for the Glory of God.
Guest Post by Media Impact International (MII)
For more content from Media Impact International, sign up to the MII Newsletter.
Learn more about brand in the K.T Strategy Course – Lesson 6