If I had to say which social media platform I hear dismissed most, I’d probably say Twitter.
“It’s just too much.”
“People are on it all of the time. I don’t have time for that!”
Or perhaps my favorite:
“I just don’t get it.”
I understand your worries! Twitter is fast, and interacting with people with 140 characters can be challenging. You may long for the days when a number sign was just a number sign, but those days are gone, my friend.
Twitter is the reason any social media website has the hashtag or the idea of “trending topics.” People are organizing protests and starting movements with tweets.
If you run you church’s social media, you’re doing yourself and your ministry a disservice if you don’t at least understand what Twitter is and why it can be such a powerful tool.
So let’s get to it. Here are 5 ways you can revive your church’s Twitter page.
1. If you want people to be interested in your profile, you have to have an engaging bio. Use hashtags, Internet lingo, and buzzwords in your Twitter bio. If you use a hashtag in your profile, people searching that hashtag will be more likely to find your profile.
Twitter is less formal than your church website and Facebook. Have some fun creating your Twitter persona!
2. Upload a creative profile picture and cover photo.
If you think your church or ministry is exciting, let people know with your profile picture and cover photo. I recommend using your church's or denomination’s logo or name for your profile picture and an action shot or statement graphic for your cover photo. Make sure your pictures are not cropped poorly or pixelated.
3.Tweet more often.
If you want people to follow your account, tweet more. It sounds simple, but no one wants to follow someone who tweets once a month. There’s no obvious reward for following a dead account, so make sure your account has at least 1-3 tweets a day. (Twitter is not like Facebook. You cannot tweet too much. Ever.)
4. Tweet pictures and videos.
More pictures! More videos! Your followers will react more to visuals. Potential followers will find you because of your photo and video content. If you’re scared to create graphics because you don’t have the training, use tools such as Canva (Canva.com) to create professional graphics using amateur skills! Check out Canva's social media templates here.
5. Use topical hashtags.
Individual Twitter users love using statement hashtags to show their wit and character on Twitter, but that doesn’t usually translate well for organizations. #KnowWhatImean? Stick to trending and/or common hashtags to generate the most new followers or retweets. People will find your Twitter account just because you’re using popular hashtags (#BlackLivesMatter, #FaithfullyLGBT, etc.), and you can build a network from there.
1. Utilize Twitter lists.
If you’re not using Twitter lists, you’re probably really exhausted with Twitter. Twitter moves quickly, and it’s difficult to find good content without organizing the way you view your feed. It’s time to use Twitter lists! Twitter lists are a great way to separate the people you follow into groups. Make a list of your favorite religion bloggers and news sites, and have shareable content ready every time you log in to Twitter!
2. Catch up with Twitter’s “Moments” feature.
I love Twitter’s new Moments feature. It’s an organized way to view top tweets, videos, and pictures about top trending events, without digging through Twitter for hours and hours. You can easily repurpose some of these top trending posts and topics for content on your page. Find ways that religion and justice work connect to popular “Moments,” and weigh in on your church’s page!
3. Use Periscope and Twitter video.
What do Facebook and Twitter have in common? Video posts get more attention. If you’re ready to reinvigorate your Twitter account, start recording portions of your worship service or 30-second sermons to share live on your Twitter feed. Join Periscope, a Twitter-based video app, to live stream special moments at your church.
4. Thank Your followers and give them additional information about you.
If people follow you, they deserve a thank you! Send a direct (private) message to everyone who follows you! Thank them for following you, and give them an additional piece of information about yourself. For example, “Thank for following me! I edit an awesome Christian blog, NewSacred.org. Check us out!"
Write a thank you message and save it so you can copy and paste it for every new follower. (Some third-party apps send these messages automatically, but that’s for a later post.)
5. Make sure your blogs/church websites have Twitter cards.
Why do some links generate pictures and summary squares on Twitter and others don’t? Twitter cards, my friends. With a little coding change, every link from your website will post to Twitter with summary information and a thumbnail image. This will make your tweets more eye-catching in the Twitter feed.
Now, I hope you’re all rushing to improve your accounts so I can follow you from the @UnitedChurch and retweet all the great content you post.
Hashtags and happiness,
5 Helpful Links