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imageUnlimited Blogs

Amp Vibe includes unlimited blogs. It's a good idea to keep your people on your site for your blogs, and not have them go off site to a 3rd party blog source . . . they may not come back to your site. Keep them here with Amp Vibe.

See a sample below.

 

Should I Blog?

Posted by Elexio Support on OA5er @ 5:03 AM

Should I Blog?
The benefits and risks of writing a blog and/or tweeting as a pastor.

"To Blog or Not to Blog, that is the question?" That is the question indeed. In a simple answer, yes. I believe it is important for pastors to blog.

Here are few reasons why:

  1. Creating Community: When pastors preach from the pulpit it is a monologue of one way communication, outward. A blog, however, allows communication to have a return path which creates a dialogue and a community of conversation.
  2. Relational Influence: Just because you have “Pastor” in front of your name is not enough to have people follow you, it may also put you at a disadvantage. If you want to be influential you first must be seen as genuine and gaining the trust of those you are attempting to influence. Influence comes from trust and trust comes from relationships. Blogging will allow you to develop these relationships opening opportunities to share the Gospel.
  3. Encouraging Believers & Meeting Needs: How often have you needed an encouraging word from someone or a need fulfilled after many hard hours of effort when at the end of the day nothing seems to be working out the way you had planned? With blogging you can both give and receive encouragement. Keeping in touch with others, giving a voice to someone’s struggles, opening up a channel for resource needs & outreach services, etc. builds & strengthens community relationships both local and abroad.
  4. Foster Spiritual Growth: Having a blog topic on specific teaching series can be an effective tool in helping both believers and non-believers grow spiritually. It opens honest dialogue communication with your audience which allows you to see where they are at in their walk with Christ. It allows you to reach them where they are communicating beyond the pulpit. It can also give you a window into the health of your church or ministry by listening to what and how your blog community is saying.


Above are just a few reasons pastors should blog. Below are some things to consider before you blog.

  1. Plan Before You Build: Make sure your blog aligns with your church’s or ministry’s goals. Congruency is key when you are building genuineness and trust among your followers.
  2. Start Don’t Stop: Once you begin you need to keep it up. To build a following you need to give your blog regular attention, both from the posting of topics and to the response of comments. Failure to participate regularly will cause a breakdown in communication and message influence.
  3. Watch the Clock: Be careful to set yourself definite time blocks for blogging purposes. This will help you avoid encroaching into other valuable ministry focused time needs. You only have so many hours in a day. To make them all count you need to plan, select, and protect your schedule.
  4. Remember Your Audience: Try not to make it personal. Stay open to criticism, be respectful of others, and lead the discussion don’t push it along. Remember your ultimate goal is to influence change for the cause of Christ. Blogging is akin to face-2-face communication save the body language or verbal queues so you have to “listen” to your audience more carefully to “hear” what they are saying.
  5. I Said What?: Review what you are typing before posting it just to make sure what you are trying to say is actually being said. For example: “I tell you the truth, today you will be with me in paradise.” vs. “I tell you the truth today, you will be with me in paradise.” A simple comma placement makes a HUGE difference in the message. In building terms we call that measuring twice, cutting once.

A “word” about Twitter. I wouldn’t recommend using Twitter as a primary communication tool by itself. Instead leverage your blog by incorporating Twitter as a way to tweet alerts of new blog post entries or topic discussion threads to your Twitter followers rather than using it for regular conversation. Informing someone you’re heading off to Starbucks for your favorite cup’a jo “aint”, what I would call, carrying on a valuable conversation. 140 characters really doesn’t allow for that. Using Twitter this way will keep your Twitter followers in the loop and make them feel important and valuable to your blog discussion interactions. Now you’re building your blog community following and can watch it grow in the process.

Marketing Director, Elexio

FAQ on Church Web Sites

Posted by Elexio Support on OA4er @ 4:58 AM

FAQ on Church Web Sites
(Website Content Management & Where to spend your money)

It is not a new concept to say that in today’s digital culture Churches and Christian ministries need to have a web presence to communicate effectively. But with all the technology out there to choose from and the increase in choices constantly on the horizon how does one choose? In this article two main areas will be addressed;

  1. What is a Web Site Content Management System, what do they do and, most importantly, does my church need one?
  2. Where should our church spend the majority of our already-limited Web budget?

Web site Content Management Systems:

Without getting “too” technical with terminology a Web Content Management System (WCM, WCMS or Web CMS) is content management system (CMS) software, implemented as a Web application, for creating and managing HTML content. It is used to manage and control a large, dynamic collection of Web material (HTML documents and their associated images). A WCMS facilitates content creation, content control, editing, and essential Web maintenance functions.

The software provides authoring (and other) tools designed to allow users with little knowledge of programming languages or markup languages to create and manage content with relative ease.

Web content management systems began to be formally developed as commercial software products in the mid 1990s. In the mid 2000s, the web content management market became a fragmented market as a plethora of new providers emerged to complement the traditional vendors both from Open Source and Proprietary positions.

Some systems combine the offline and online approaches. Some systems write out executable code (e.g. JSP, ASP, PHP, ColdFusion, or Perl pages) rather than just static HTML, so that the CMS itself does not need to be deployed on every Web server. Other hybrids operate in either an online or offline mode.

A few important things to consider in determining whether or not your church needs a WCMS is:

  • Purpose & Goals of the site for your Church/Ministry
  • Technical savvy of your staff in website coding ability
  • Amount, Type, & Frequency of the content that will be on your site and the number of people involved in the content delivery process
  • The “flashiness” used in the presentation of your site content
  • How the content will be delivered (on site, remotely, or both)
  • Budget

There are a few more, however, this is a good starting point.

Where to spend the money:

Simply put, that is one tough question, to which, I don’t know if I have a clear answer or even if there is a “correct” answer available. Let me try to explain. The problem that most churches and ministries have is not that they are spending too much or too little on their Web Sites but rather not having a clearly defined goal and purpose for their Web Site. They may want to have everything technology has to offer but may not need or may rarely use a good portion of what they have. A church or ministry’s Web Site technology needs will depend primarily on what they are trying to accomplish with their Web Site not so much on the size and scope of their ministry. The best way to get the most distance out of every dollar spent on Web Site technology is to have a clear purpose and goal for what that Web Site will need to accomplish, then , cost it out and prioritize the necessary budgetary items for your technological needs list as well as the ongoing facilitation of that technology.

There is no one solution fits all magic bullet that will work. Having every bell & whistle will not bring more people to your site by itself. Each technology tool must be fed content that is relevant to the visitor. And, keep this in mind, each technology tool used on the Web Site takes resources to implement, remain current, and stay relevant to its visitors. Otherwise it becomes a resource draining useless dead weight that no one will use. I cannot definitively say that in order to have a successful church or ministry Web Site you will need to have this or that technology, however, one thing is certain, without a clear purpose and goal for your Web Site any financial road or technology will get you there, and it will be a costly one in one way or another.

Marketing Director, Elexio

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