Have some fall fun with Facebook
Most likely, you have been on Facebook. You may have even wrestled with how to increase engagement on your church’s Facebook page. Here are five ideas for using Facebook this fall to engage your congregation and other people in your community online. You may discover that face-to-face encounters also result!
1. What did you do last summer?
Think of this as that standard grade-school activity where the children bring pictures and souvenirs from their summer adventures to school and tell what they did during the vacation. Adapt this by inviting people to share their photos of summer activities on the church’s Facebook page. Add an extra incentive with a contest that awards for categories, such as “Traveled the Farthest,” “Most Unusual,” “Probably Needs a Vacation after This Vacation” and others. Have fun with this idea. As people upload photos, tag them or have members share their own photos with the church location. This helps to spread the name of the church among everyone’s networks. Here are some other vacation challenges for churches.
2. Scavenger hunt or hide-and-seek
Tony Hawk, a world-famous, championship skateboarder, does a regular “Twitter Hunt,” using his Twitter account and network of followers. Tony will hide skateboards, signed items or whatever else he can dream up all over the world. Then he tweets written or photo clues as to where items are. The only rule in this global treasure hunt is that the person finding the treasure must take a photo of himself or herself with the item when it is found. You can capitalize on this idea by organizing a monthlong scavenger hunt. Hide an item each day or once a week. Offer clues, partial photos, video clues and written notes from the hidden item about where to find it. The person who finds the hidden treasure claims the prize.
Another fun idea is to hide your church staff around town. This game really appeals to youth and young adults, so choose the appropriate "hiders.” Promote the game a couple of weeks in advance on Facebook and highlight a specific time for when the person(s) will be hiding. It's no fun if the clues are too easy, but the "hiders" can't wait all day. Therefore, it may be a good idea to make the clues difficult starting off and easier as the hiding time approaches. Here are some good hiding spots (the prize should be obvious):
- ice-cream or coffee shop
- rollerskating, roller-derby, laser-tag or paint-ball arena
- CD/record store, bookstore or mall location
- outdoor concert, art festival or public event
3. Surprise destination.
4. A new-fashioned hymn sing.
5. Online meditation.