First, the congregation should develop a card, postcard, brochure, or flyer that members can hand or mail to people as they invite them. The printed material should at least include the church location, worship times, and website address. Yvon Prehn, a church communication specialist, warns against getting bogged down in design details because “people are not wowed into the kingdom.” Rather all material should offer useful content and be easy to read and understand.3
Special events and holidays offer another opportunity for members to invite people they know. Some congregations designate a particular Sunday as Invite-a-Friend Sunday, Open House Sunday, or Special Recognition Sunday (such as honoring teachers, first responders, or
others in the community).4 Congregations can createcards or flyers for these special worship events for members to distribute or mail. Mass communications—the church website and
social media channels, direct mail, yard signs, door hangers, church banners and signs, radio and print ads, and community ads (such as bulletin boards, ads in movie theaters, or sponsoring events)—are additional broad strategies for reaching people. The goal of these efforts is to show the congregation as a place that welcomes newcomers. While no one media strategy produces the desired results in today’s context, some experts argue that there is a growing preference for
printed materials. In fact, even though many congregations have invested in digital marketing strategies, a recent study found that direct mail outperforms all digital communications combined by 600%.5 Still, an up-to-date and easy to navigate church website (optimized for mobile phones) serves as a primary source of information to which print pieces can direct.