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Posted by on Sep 5, 2012 in communications | 2 comments

5 reasons people aren’t listening to your announcements.

5 reasons people aren’t listening to your announcements.

Sorry . . . I don’t mean to be Debbie Downer . . . but your people aren’t listening when you stand up and talk at them about what’s really important to you at your church.

I wish they were. Believe me.

Over the last 800 +/- weekends of being involved in “what are we talking about in announcements” my conviction is that it’s a lousy way to try to communicate to a church. If you are relying on some dude to stand up at the front to motivate people to get connected with your ministry event or initiative it won’t work. If the cornerstone of your communications plan is simply have that person park on stage and bark about the details about what is coming up – I can guarantee you it won’t gain traction.

Again, I’m sorry.

Here are 5 reasons people aren’t listening to your announcements:

  • What’s in it for them? We want to get them to attend our event. We need volunteers for the upcoming thing. We have a need that we are hoping they will fill. People are intrinsically motivated to pay attention to things that will positively impact them. We don’t frame our communication in a way that helps our people see what difference this makes to them.
  • You need to sell not market. Marketing is about making sure that people understand about the features and benefits of your product or service. Sales is about working with people individually to overcome their objections and get them to sign on the dotted line. Church leaders think way too much about “marketing” to people when what you need to do is think about “selling”. Who is person that is going to talk to people directly about engaging with your church?
  • Too much noise. You want your people to take away the teaching points from the message . . . to chew on what difference that will make in their lives for the coming week. Everything can just be noise. Every time you add another announcement you add exponentially reduces it’s effectiveness in breaking through. Two announcements are 30% as effective as one . . . three is 90% less effective as one . . . 
  • Wrong Audience. If you are announcing the up coming hiker club trip to the wilderness on Tuesday afternoon . . . which maybe 5% of the audience could possibly attend . . . you are telling 95% of the audience to ignore you. By having announcements that only focus a small part of your community your are training your people to tune you out.
  • Too Much Treadmill. When was the last time you celebrated something fun that happened at your church? If you are always taking time to market what’s coming up next you are missing an opportunity to engage (and reward) people who have been involved in something already at the church. Celebrate your people and what they are doing . . . they’ll listen more. 😉

What about your church? What have you learned about doing annoucements? [I’d love to hear from you!]


2 Comments

  1. Right on, Rich! Thanks.

  2. What’s the best way to get the information about upcoming events out so that people really hear/see them? We have a fight-fest for real estate in the bulletin and pre-worship on-screen announcements. Someone’s feelings always get hurt when we can’t include everyONE every WEEK. Suggestions?

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