What if I told you that this weekend, nearly half of your congregation would tell their friends about your church? And not just one or two friends - they’d be recommending you to around 200 people, each. You’d most likely call me crazy, but in a nice way, like eccentric.
Then you’d probably ask, “On which planet is this possible?” I’m glad you asked. The planet is still Earth, but on this weekend, instead of asking your community to go out into the world and invite a friend, you’d simply be asking them to check-in. On Facebook, that is.
With each check-in on Facebook, they’d be providing real world good to real people in need, like meals for a child or water for families - all while letting their friends know how awesome their church is. It’s a program we call Reach - and it's exactly how Crossroads Christian Church in Lexington, KY was able to reach so many people in a single weekend.
Like many churches across the country, Crossroads was searching for a better way to reach more people and grow their church They tried mailers with targeted zip codes, encouraged word-of-mouth recommendations, and did their best to come up with an effective social media strategy. But none of those measures were getting the results they were looking for.
With Reach, every Facebook check in at Crossroads Church provides real world good,
like care for children through Compassion International.
That’s when they heard about Reach by Causely, a program that would allow them to quickly and affordably reach thousands of people - all while supporting great causes important to their congregation. “For the same money we were going to use for marketing, we could now use that money to do good," says Teaching Pastor Griff Ray. "We could also let people know that we’re a church that wants to do good…that we’re not just focused on ourselves.” The decision was easy, the results have been amazing.
Want to see how easy it is to turn your outreach into good?
In their first weekend of partnering with Reach, Crossroads was able to reach 165,000 people through Facebook check-ins. That's far more than they were able to reach through social media in the entire previous year. Because Facebook check-ins are typically seen by about 150-200 friends of a congregation member, they are the perfect way to quickly reach a large audience.
By the end of the month, Crossroads had generated over 500,000 friend-to-friend recommendations on Facebook. And the best part is, every time a member of the congregation checked in on Facebook, Reach made a donation to charity on behalf of Crossroads. Altogether, Crossroads provided 10 years of clean water to 32 families in Bolivia!
Ray says, “When we announced what we’d done in December, the whole room broke out in applause. They loved that their church had done so much good and that they got to be a part of it.” And perhaps most importantly, Ray says, “It gave our people a non-threatening way to begin to engage in spiritual conversations.” Not surprisingly, attendance is up at Crossroads.
A friend to friend recommendation is a powerful thing, and combining it with an easy way to help others made Reach a natural fit for Crossroads. Ray says, “We all know that people trust their friends and have a tendency to go with someone they know. So if we know that, why not harness it?”