As you plant your church, you know how intentional you must be with your time. You have a lot to do, and there’s no one else on the depth chart to delegate to. Ugh. Feels overwhelming, right? So when it comes time for marketing and sharing your message, how do you ensure it has an impact? The last thing you can afford to do is stare at a blank while the clock ticks away. The truth is, many of us are forced to shoot from the hip under the pressure of a deadline or the tyranny of other to-do items. Bang out some words. Get the website finished. Hammer out a welcome email. Fly by a flier. Fling it out there and hope for the best…but the feeling in your stomach is the anticipation of the worst. Lost opportunity.
I live in a part of the country with two prized values: bbq and sweet tea. I was having a late afternoon lunch by myself one day in the best bbq joint in town. As things slowed between the lunch and dinner crowds, a few of the workers scurried around topping off sauce bottles and brewing the next batch of tea. Now I came to this spot a lot, enough to know the infamous owner and his ol’ fashion ways of running his business. If you want a place that ascribes to “the customer is always right” philosophy…this was not your joint. But if you ascribe to the “bbq so good we’ll tell a customer to get off his phone or get out line until he’s ready to order like a human”…you’ve found a home. The owner, with his peculiar way of doing things, walked through the main dining area and asked a new employee who was making tea if she knew how they did it. She answered back, “I think so. So-and-so and so-and-so showed me how they each do it.” “Hold up now!”, he barked. “We do it the same way every time. If we can’t do something as simple as make our sweet tea the same way every time, how are we gonna serve our customers great bbq every time?” He then promptly showed her THE correct way to do it. Said, “Now that you know, you won’t have to wonder or waste any time trying to figure it out.”
Wouldn’t it be great if we had a trustworthy recipe to follow when it came to the website, marketing, messaging and branding for your organization? Think of the time saved and the opportunity gained. You could replace your marketing anxiety with actual excitement, knowing you’ve got something to share that will serve and help your audience.
In the next installment, we’ll take a closer look at some ways we can start to build our own ‘Sweet Tea Recipe’.
In the meantime, ask yourself this question: (Part 1) Why do we do what we do, (Part 2) the way we do it, and (Part 3) what are we unwilling to compromise on? Jot down your thoughts or feel free to email them to me. We’ll come back to this important discovery.