Creating a True Online Community

Creating True Online CommunityThe Internet has opened up a whole new world of opportunity for sharing information, connecting with each others, and sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  But is your church taking full advantage of this opportunity?

Unfortunately, most churches are only using the Internet as an opportunity to share information.  It’s just a virtual megaphone.  However, that really doesn’t work very well.  People want more.  We live the world of Facebook and Twitter and people look at the Internet as a way to connect with people and share their thoughts and ideas.

Community is important online as well as offline.  Because even online, we are all still people (right?) with the same social needs we have offline.  The more people we know, the more listened too we feel, the more we feel we are a part of a group, the more likely we are to be involved and to stick around.  But for all it’s advantages in communication and outreach, the Internet has one really big disadvantage…anonymity.  It’s very easy for people to participate in online activities without even using their name, creating no connection with the community with which they are interacting.

It’s a great irony.  We all want to be a part of a group, but we also like to be anonymous. Given the option with online interactions people will choose to be anonymous, especially if they are new to a group.  Maybe it’s because we are trying to protect ourselves from possible humiliation and rejection.  So, with online communities one of the biggest tasks is to get people out from behind the curtain and get them to start really being a part of the community.

Over the next week or so I want to discuss the ways churches can break down the barriers within their online activities in order to create online communities in the truest sense of the word (community).

Photo by CarbonNYC

Let’s kick it off with some ideas.

What are some ideas you have for creating more open online communities?

What has worked for you in the past?

What hasn’t worked?

About the author

Kurt Steinbrueck

Church Marketing Online is a service of OurChurch.Com | Copyright ©2016-2017 by OurChurch.Com. All rights reserved.