Saturday, March 16, 2013

Church Newsletters

Is this still a valuable form of communication?  As most congregations move towards online newsletters, do people still read them?  When I got it in the mail, I was very diligent about reading it, but now I often forget that it is out there.  Newsletters require a lot of time and effort.  In the past I found it invaluable for conveying information, now I am not so sure.  How many congregants remember to check it out every month?  Are other forms better received?  What are your thoughts?

3 comments:

Steve Caldwell said...

We still have a monthly newsletter in our congregation. We publish it electronically and also print a limited number of paper copies.

This serves at least four purposes for us:

(1) Members who don't have internet access appreciate it (this is mostly older members who receive a paper copy by snail mail).

(2) Visitors can pick up a copy during their visit to take with them.

(3) As the web site person, I upload a PDF copy to the web site and publish this link on the web site, Twitter, and Facebook. Our office staff includes this PDF link in her outgoing "Constant Contact" emails.

(4) As the web site person, I use the PDF newsletter's content as one of my primary information sources for the web site. The information in the newsletter is "official" and has been vetted prior to me copying and pasting into the web site.

sandhilldiary said...

The congregation I attend also still has a monthly newsletter sent by email/pdf with a few paper copies available in the church for guest and visitors, or mailed to people who don't use email.

I read it every month and use it to reference what's happening when. I also appreciate that it gives the minister, DRE, Board President and others space for reflection and communicating vision and long range ideas that don't necessarily fit well elsewhere.

We also get a weekly "what's happening" email that roughly mirrors the announcements in the order of service, with whatever updates need to be communicated.

Sara said...

I think it's still useful, but it has to be just one of many different methods you use to get the word out about important things. I counted it up recently and realized that in my role as DRE I use 14 different methods to communicate with my congregation. Each method is better at reaching certain people, and no single method reaches everyone.

I think this is just the new reality.