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How Small Churches *Actually* Grow On Social Media

These are the four steps to follow...

Hey, it’s Brady,

90 days ago I began working directly with a smaller church.

Even better? This is a church from Rochester - ranked by Barna as the #9 most post-Christian city in 2019.

My team and I got to work. We followed four steps.

Here’s what happened…

The first step to a successful church social media plan?

New content every week. Indefinitely. #NoWeeksOff.

For three months, we’ve reviewed this church’s sermon every week and then developed two vertical video sermon clips.

We posted these SocialSermons to Facebook, Instagram, YouTube Shorts, TikTok, and Twitter/X.

Here were the cross channel results:

Now to step two…

Now that we were posting consistently, the next thing we wanted to see was our first ‘Viral For Me’ post.

That’s any post we publish that reaches 10X the audience of a typical post for this church.

See those spikes on the graph below? Those are ‘Viral For Me’ posts.

And what came from this increase in engagement and reach? Compared to the previous 90 days: 

  • Followers are growing 45% faster

  • Engagement is 204% higher

  • Impressions have increased 395%

The next goal on our horizon is The 10X Growth Rate. This is growing followers by 4% each month.

Pretty modest on its own. But when it compounds over the months and years, it translates to 10X growth over 5 years.

Meaning, this church would leap from 1.7K followers today, to 17,000 followers in 5 years.

In my experience, The 10X Growth rate can take anywhere from 6-24 months to achieve. Through 90 days, this church is at 1.47%. Which is great.

But more importantly, we can see a steady increase when we look at the growth. Slow and steady is always ideal.

Why do we do all this? Why care about followers and reach? Crossover events.

This is when we can tangibly point to our online efforts translating to in-person:

  • Visitor cards saying they heard about the church first on social

  • Conversations in the lobby with new folks saying they followed online before visiting

  • Pastors being recognized in the community: “Are you a pastor? You were on my Instagram feed this week?”

Crossover events can happen at any point. But the closer we get to The 10X Growth Rate and the longer we sustain it, the more predictable and frequent they become.

This church, in one of the most challenging places to do ministry in America, is off to a great start.

Want to work directly with me? Join the waitlist at SocialSermons.com.

Spring 2024 Church Social Media Trends

One specific design trend is cooking in Spring 2024.

Church sermon clips are showing no signs of slowing down - and there's one reason for this that you've probably never thought of.

Plus, a new Instagram trend is taking the platform by storm.

All that and more on the podcast this week.

Thanks as always for your time, attention, and trust. Talk to you next Thursday. - Brady Shearer