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A Simple Framework for Writing Sermon Series Promotional Copy That Connects

A Simple Framework for Writing Sermon Series Promotional Copy That Connects

When promoting an upcoming series of messages at your church you need to think carefully about the language you use to promote it. The right promotional copy can encourage your people invite friends while if you get it wrong it can actually repel people from your church. Here is a simple three part test I use when I think about the copy we use to promote upcoming messages:

  • megaphoneonearHype? // Does the promotion of this series over-promise on what you plan on delivering? Are you using cultural references just to draw people in but you know you aren’t going to actually deal with them during the series? Does the copy of the promotional material sound like it was written by the guy who advertises Monster Truck shows on the radio?? It’s tempting to use hype when promoting an upcoming series … don’t do it! First time guests will see through it … and your people will lose trust with you!
  • Hope? // When you promote an upcoming series do you offer hope for a preferred future? Would you describe this series as inspirational and aspirational in nature?Do you use language that gives people a sense that the series will give a path to follow towards something better for them? Hope is at the core of the message of Jesus. Often we get into ministry because we want to offer hope to this generation. My caution from a communications point of view is use it sparingly. If all your series sound like you are “selling hope” people may lose trust that you are connected to the here and now.
  • Help? // When people read your promotional material do they get a clear sense of how this series will make their life better? Is the copy written with obvious statements of what’s in the series for them? Can you clearly articulate the outcome for your people at the end of the series? People are drawn to solving the problems they perceive they have. Start with understanding the issues your people have and build your series around those. The Bible is a treasure of resources to help people … it’s ancient wisdom for today! Helping people is a great model of ministry.

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5 Comments

  1. Great advice Rich-I really think the HYPE aspect should be used sparingly. Too much hype can go wrong if you lack hype when you deliver-not saying we should put on a show-but the hype we can create around a series can be too over the top that it can make us appear less than enthusiastic.

    • Totally agree!

      Do you have any examples of times you’ve used hype and regretted it!? Share your pain!

      Rich

      • Yeah, there was this one time when I spent so much effort putting together the package that I skimped on the content. I did not pay enough attention to the message. It was solid but it sank from being too detail heavy. I looked and sounded confused-I think the scientific term is the Duh-Factor.

  2. Thought provoking Rich. Making me think :) Do you have any examples of how you do this or series copy you guys have written?

    • Thanks for dropping in Bobby!

      A couple quick examples that came to mind …

      In the “hype” category – a couple years ago we did a series where we were leveraging movies to talk about timeless truths from Scripture. We promised something about Harry Potter (back when it was cool) … we ended having a message that used a quote from JK Rowling as the base of the message rather than Harry Potter. You can see the message here: http://www.liquidchurch.com/movies/4/

      A recent that we did this past spring that I thought we landed well in the “Help” category was our series “Love Doctor”. Here’s the copy for that: “Most relationships begin healthy. But disease can set in – an argument goes wrong, passion fizzles, bitterness or betrayal makes us lovesick. Time for a visit to the Love Doctor… get God’s prescription for dating, marriage, and healthy relationships!”

      “Hope” … we did a series called “Revive” that articulated a desired future … “Does your spiritual life feel dull? Are your prayers on life support? Revive is a new series about revival– when God brings spiritual awakening to His church.”

      What about stuff you’ve written? I’d love to hear some examples!

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