I have gone from a Facebook hater to a daily user over the past two years. There is statistical evidence that many of the people your church currently ministers to, and hopes to minister to, have done the same thing. I can identify three reasons for this in my life. Each has a direct application to your church’s use of this media:
1) Those people in my extended family who love snapshots, use Facebook to share their daily lives.
Application: Congregations are fellowships. A “group FB page” that carries photos of events at the church will build interest in those events. You can also share mission links to the projects that your church supports (I think the Apostle Paul would love this). The trick is to give the ‘right to post’ to someone in every group in the church. Then encourage people in the congregation to ‘follow’ the church FB page.
2) I keep running into people who use FB today the way I used email ten years ago. Some people prefer to use FB to communicate.
Application: Every church should advertise every event and program in multiple media. There are people who will check the church’s Facebook page to see the date of the next potluck dinner. Putting something on Facebook should be an extension of putting something on the church calendar. Also, you need to be prepared for those who will use FB messages like email.
3) A club that I belong to uses Facebook as a way to do club functions between meetings.
Application: If you want to get people to read their Bible, then have someone post a Bible verse of the day to your church FB page. If properly formatted, are there prayer concerns you would share on FB? You may want to give someone the job of receiving prayers and then deleting any identifying information. Format: “A member is facing surgery this Tuesday,” and “Pray for those graduating from Riverview High School this week.”
The key to all these things is giving those church members that you trust, the right to post those things that interest them on the church’s FB page. Don’t make the mistake of assigning FB to one person. Go to every group and say, “Who here uses FB?” Then ask them to add posting to the church page to their current use of the media. Think of it as tithing your FB time.