There are millions of people online at any given time. How many of those millions will ever hear about your church’s website? There are many ways for people to find out about your website and we’ve discussed many of those ways right here on the Church Marketing Online blog. Lately we’ve been looking at the social web and how your church can engage members and visitors online through interactive website features, social networking, etc., but social bookmarking is a little different. With social bookmarking you have a way to market your church through some of the most powerful marketing tools there has ever been…not social bookmarking per se…but simply the power of recommendations and the desire for people to fit in.
Does your church use this tool?
The Power Of Recommendations:
You want to buy a new camera, but you’re not sure which camera you should get. So, like many people, you fire up your web browser and start searching for information about cameras. You may look at some professional reviews, like consumer reports, but most people end up looking at the reviews that regular folks have posted about products they have purchased. They don’t know these people, none-the-less they look to them for a recommendation of which camera to buy. We’re social creatures and we tend to trust the recommendations of others, even if we don’t know them.
Social bookmarking is basically way to recommend a web page. By bookmarking the page(s) publicly you are telling everyone, “Check out this page. I like it.” Lot’s of people recommend articles, product pages, videos, and other interesting pages, why not recommend your church’s website?
We Want To Fit In:
I’ve been reading a book recently, Neuro Web Design – What Makes Them Click. It looks at website behavior from a psychological viewpoint. One of the points they made was how people, in general, want to fit in. This is something hardwired into us at a subconscious level. It changes our behavior and effects our decisions. We’ve all heard of peer pressure. That’s a more obvious example of how our desire to fit in will affect our decision making. The same thing happens on the web. That subconscious desire to fit in causes us to buy products, watch videos, and visit websites. On a conscious level we may think, “Why is everyone so interested in this? I should check it out too.”
Social bookmarking is not limited to one person. Everyone can do it. Some people even have multiple accounts with social bookmark sites. The more people who do it, the more popular a page is, the more it can cause people who find the bookmarks to want to visit the site too.
Social bookmarking can be a powerful tool, especially if you can get high involvement with your congregation. It can tap into people’s natural desire to want to fit in and to follow the recommendations of others. In addition, the links back to your church’s website can help with your church’s rankings in the search engines. A nice added bonus.
Does your church use social bookmarking?
Kurt Steinbrueck is a Deacon at his church and has been Director of Marketing Services with Ourchurch.Com for over 5 years providing Christian search engine optimization services including a service specific for church marketing, the Top Church Search Rankings service, a church search engine optimization service. Please contact Kurt at OurChurch.Com if you would be interested in getting better rankings for your church in the search engines.