There is a lot of chatter on social media – are you listening for mentions of your church plant?
What’s the Problem?
Social media is designed to be just that: social. Too many churches use it as just another media outlet to push communication in one direction. It’s OK to get information out there, but it’s supposed to be a 2-way conversation.
Maybe you already have a discipline to participate in social media 30 minutes a day. You should. But what if you are being mentioned on a local newspaper website or blog that’s not really on your radar?
What to Do
Spend a few minutes crafting your search. Use common search tricks, like putting quotation marks around the name of your church “XYZ Church” to search for the exact phrase in the exact order. If you don’t do at least this, you’ll get search results for every time just the word church is mentioned on the internet. You can also use a minus sign before a word to exclude it. A great way to use this is if there is another church using your same name in a different city; you can try to avoid getting false positives for them by excluding the name of their town. Of course, all of this is more of an art than a science, so be prepared to continually tweak and improve your search terms.
Consider responding to any mentions appropriately, but be very prayerful before responding to anyone who may have bad-mouthed you or the church plant.