David versus Goliath. The story of the little guy versus a behemoth. It’s a storyline that we all love. It’s a theme that pops up throughout culture and in our everyday language. We relish the thought of watching the little guy overcome the odds to achieve the impossible. Sadly, that’s the way some of us see some of the churches in our own city. We all know of a church near us that seems like a Goliath, so big that it seems like they’re best at whatever they do.
There’s a myth in our church culture when it comes to the whole “bigger is better” thing. We see these “megachurches” with large parking lots, significant attendance, higher donations, and etc. So because of their size, we believe that these churches are doing it “better”.
This is also true when comes to social media, we tend to assume that most of these megachurches are just better than smaller churches. We start to believe the myth that because of their large size, they must have a huge staff, a large budget, and the latest tools. Yet, in all of my travels, conversations, and time spent listening, I’ve learned that this simply isn’t true. Today, I want to dispel four myths that a lot of us believe when it comes to megachurches and social media. Here they are:
Myth #1 Megachurches Have an Unlimited Resources
“Unlimited” is a loaded word. While no church has unlimited physical resources, some churches do have bigger budgets when it comes to buildings, staff and even marketing. However, when it comes to social media the truth is most megachurches typically spend less than the you would expect.
One of the reasons this happens is that a lot megachurches are stretched thinner than they let on. Between coffee and donuts, extra space for parking, additional musical instruments and every other expense you can imagine, many of them have budgets that are tapped out before they even get to social media. Most megachurches try to spend as little as possible on social media. They utilize free or low-cost versions of services like Buffer, Hootsuite or Canva.
Myth #2 Megachurches Have a Huge Social Media Staff
Some churches think that that in order to do social media well they need a “fully staffed” social media team. Depending on your church, this can be done quite easily without investing money into full-time staff.
Some megachurhces will have a few people (either volunteer or part-time) monitor the accounts with one or two responsible for direct posting. Others have the whole process subdivided to different volunteers at different times. While it would be nice to have full time social media staff, you don’t need one to to great job. Instead, you just need to have the right systems in place.
Myth #3 Megachurches Are Good at Social Media
Bigger doesn’t always mean better. In fact, I think the personal factor that a smaller church can bring to the social media world helps them produce better content as well as have more personality. Megachurches can come off too polished, systematic, and feel too rigid on social media. Often, what is considered “good” for megachurches can be so polished it sounds more like an ad rather than a message.
Myth #4 Megachurches Have the Latest Tools
Yes, some megachurches have the latest tools at their disposal. But in the whole idea of investing in tools isn’t what it seems. Some churches go after flashy items and the latest gadgets. However, most megachurches I know typically run their social media on few simple platforms with the goal of keeping it as cheap as possible. They understand that it’s not the tool that you’re using that makes your social media great, but how you use those tools.
When it comes to the massive buildings and large congregations known as a megachurch, you have to remember that bigger is not always better. They have their inefficiencies, extensive processes and sometimes fear taking risks.
Regardless of your congregation size, donation budget, or the amount of parking spaces, if you have the passion and the drive, your church can do amazing things on social media. By focusing on your local community and congregation, you’ll have the most success. Take care of those who live around you, and your social media will always have a larger impact than any megachurch down the street.