church printing outreach

Church Printing Outreach: 6 Steps to Creating a Great Strategy

Salmaan Ahmad

Salmaan Ahmad

December 13, 2023

How do you design an effective church printing outreach strategy? Connecting with a church membership primarily happens when the front doors of the building open and attendees and visitors arrive for weekly services. But greeting each other, participating in a meaningful worship service, and hearing about upcoming activities and events for members, visitors, or the community are just the beginning.

Most churches understand that a healthy church printing outreach strategy is the smartest way to stay in touch with members, communicate with those seeking or interested in learning more about the church as well as make a connection with the community. Developing a plan for church printing outreach projects is critical for strengthening, building, and maintaining relationships between people and the church.

Types of Church Printing Outreach

Religious organizations, just like businesses, use different types of church printing outreach methods to increase membership and connect more closely with their community and those who may be interested in learning more about their beliefs. Church printing outreach strategies are comprised of three main methods for connecting with others, and each has its role in an church printing outreach campaign’s success.

  • Digital outreach methods largely depend on a congregation already having or being able to easily procure email addresses. Digital advertising is also typically part of an outreach strategy to reach a community or other identifiable demographic.
  • Custom print products are a primary focus of outreach campaigns because they can be utilized in person, via mail, or displayed in a variety of areas with high visibility.
  • Many outreach campaigns rely on word-of-mouth to communicate information or messages between members or attendees and others. While this strategy can be unreliable at times, the personal touch makes it potentially highly effective.

Before Creating a Church Printing Outreach Strategy

In preparation for the development of a meaningful outreach strategy, organizers need to learn about their flock to better understand how to reach them effectively. The first step is to think about your congregation’s strengths. What does your church do well? How does the community see you?

Whether your congregation is focused on serving the local population, providing a loving preschool for area families, or has a thriving young adult ministry, knowing where your congregants are already spending their time and efforts will help you better reach them with outreach materials.

Next, dig into the demographics of your church. Consider handing out a survey to congregants to learn more about who they are so your church printing outreach strategy will be more effective. Learning what percentage of your population is comprised of young families, families with teens, single adults, and retirees will provide key data to help you craft meaningful outreach that will speak to each demographic.

Another aspect of understanding your congregation’s demographics is taking into consideration where your church is located. Churches located in an urban setting may have congregants that walk or use public transportation to get to services, and the church’s physical appearance will be highly visible to the surrounding community.

In contrast, a suburban church facility will not have a membership or community that walks by or to the building regularly, resulting in a facility and outreach strategy that needs to encompass members who may live and participate in church activities from afar. In addition, these insights will help you create targeted church printing outreach materials that are tailored to the needs and interests of each group.

Once you know who makes up your congregation and where they are spending their time, think about what you want to accomplish with your outreach process. Choose one or more goals that you hope your outreach will accomplish.

  • Growing your membership
  • Increasing engagement with a specific group like parents of young children, retirees, or young adults
  • Connecting with the surrounding community to increase awareness and understanding of your congregation’s beliefs
  • Building a strong, vibrant youth group

Creating a Church Printing Outreach Strategy to Reach Your Congregation and Others

Understanding what is important to your congregation and knowing who you want to impact will lead you to create an effective, realistic church printing outreach strategy.

1 Choose one outreach goal to focus on at a time, but you may find that some goals overlap, making outreach plans even more impactful.

2 Use survey results and target audience habits to pick one or more print products to match.

In walkable, urban areas, products like banners, posters and brochures are a good idea. Banners and posters can be placed in locations visible to passers-by. Brochures and flyers are perfect for handing out or leaving for the local community to pick up on their way past the building.

Nearby local gathering spots like coffee shops or cafes may also agree to post a flyer for a faith community in their area, further extending the reach of your church printing outreach tools.

In larger geographic areas where suburban churches may be located, choosing a print product that you can send or deliver directly to members and the surrounding community will help you reach your outreach goals most effectively. Direct mailers and postcards can be created inexpensively and delivered right to your member’s mailbox.

Nearby neighborhoods or targeted demographic areas can be canvassed with in-person outreach that uses printed door hangers to leave behind as part of a comprehensive outreach strategy in a suburban setting.

Congregations with a large children’s ministry or active youth groups may want to use impactful church printing outreach materials visible to visitors to the church building like posters, flyers or banners.

Churches located in multicultural communities can utilize brochures or flyers translated into commonly spoken languages to meet outreach goals that include connecting with those living or working in surrounding areas.

3 Make a specific plan for holidays or annual events. Often Christmas, Easter, and other holy days find church pews full of visitors or members who don’t regularly attend services. Churches can plan for print outreach materials to connect with those in attendance during special holidays or even popular congregational events.

  • Increase attendance and create awareness about special services or events with direct mailers like postcards and small brochures.
  • Banners and posters are both effective for urban and suburban church buildings for outreach during large gatherings.
  • Advertise special services or events with flyers and posters at locations where potential church attendees frequent.
  • Use holidays and events as an opportunity to educate the community and visitors about your congregation by offering targeted brochures describing church events and activities.
  • Create unique handouts featuring QR codes linked to your congregation’s website or social media pages to provide detailed event or holiday service information or sign-up opportunities to increase participation or awareness.

4 Develop strong branding to use on all projects to create instant recognizability. Printed outreach materials should present the congregation’s name, logo, and other informational content consistently throughout all products so the community and non-members will easily recognize materials from the congregation.

5 Remember that it takes at least four exposures to an idea to change or influence behaviors, so outreach strategies should include multiple touch points for their target audience. Combine outreach platforms and styles of outreach to increase the success of outreach initiatives. Combining social media outreach initiatives, meaningful digital content, and a robust printing plan will ensure you connect with everyone needed to meet your outreach goals.

6 One of the most important ways to build a solid church printing outreach strategy is to partner with a printing company with the experience and ability to print your products on demand with skill and timeliness. Publishing Xpress can help you bring your church printing outreach strategy to life with beautiful products that will help you connect with your members, community, and those seeking more information about your faith.

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