Disrupting the Christian Digital Evangelism Echo Chamber
Originally published at CV Outreach on Nov 6, 2017
The heart is a mystery. The line between belief and non-belief is marked by the fruit of one's life. Fruit requires time to cultivate and blossom, but we measure time in seconds online.
Digital evangelism offers the opportunity to reach the world. However, how can we be sure if the person visiting your church's website or responding to your ad is the non-believer that your ministry is trying to reach. What if the people you are reaching are believing Christians, happy about your message?
We will never know the heart of a person during that first share or interaction online, but through relationship and user signals, the Church can do a better job reaching the non-Christian through digital media. If we aren't careful, when we say that our ad campaigns and shares are reaching "non-Christians," we'll only be fooling ourselves.
Reaching the Reached
With all of the powerful analytics available to today's marketer, one thing that remains impossible to identify through audience profiles and advanced online targeting is the heart of a person.
Today's church resourcing marketplace is filled with thousands of marketers who will gladly spend your ad dollars on marketing your church. Unfortunately, very few of them have the skill or discipline to keep your church's outreach efforts focused on those who need your message the most. After more than a decade in digital evangelism, I know this pain first hand!
If your church's marketing efforts includes ads for your church through Facebook or Google, they are working in part of a much larger network that wasn't built for you. This network, built by Internet giants, is focused on advertising engagement. The more people who engage with your ad, the more money Facebook/Google can charge for their services.
Algorithms developed to target your most engaged audience will determine who will see your message. Facebook and Google are rewarding your marketing team's ad spend by putting your message in front of people with whom they know the message will resonate; Christians. To reach the non-Christian, your marketing team must continually fight against the very network that carries your message. This can be exhausting!
A Better Network
At CV Outreach, we recognize that pastors want to reach those who are spiritually seeking. Every day the team at CV Outreach talks with dozens of pastors looking for a better solution. We believe that we have built a better solution.
CV Outreach exists to connect spiritually seeking non-Christians with the church. We're currently working with over 1000 churches across North America to engage those in our communities who are searching for God. CV Outreach finds people who have deep spiritual questions, and we connect those people with pastors in a local church.
As we've engaged in this partnership with the local church, we have found something truly amazing. People reveal the condition of their hearts in conversation with CV Outreach church partners. More than 40,000 people have connected with one of our partner churches this year! We are building a better Network.
Making Local Happen
In 2018, our team is 100% focused on connecting spiritually seeking people to a local church. CV Outreach has some very innovative strategies in place that are yielding good results. In early tests, we were blessed to quantify that dozens of people attended church for the first time and connect with a pastor after responding to an online message from their local church.
We're working toward a future where those who have questions about faith can quickly and easily connect with their local pastor for answers, help and caring support.
We have been blessed with a network of partner churches with a heart for sharing the Gospel with their local communities. We can also identify the spiritual seeker just down the road who is asking questions about faith and life. The only thing to do now is to make the connection.
Would you like to help us make local happen? Connect with us today to join this growing network of churches focused on reaching their communities with the Gospel message of Jesus Christ.