More Visitors and Community In Your Church
Over 90% of church visitors now say that they heard about the church they are visiting through the internet. As a growing church, your website serves as a place to cast your vision and help potential visitors understand how their families can plug in. We want to help you accomplish that goal and attract people to your church at the exact time they are looking.
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We know that you want to have control over the look and feel of your website. With our design services, you receive up to FOUR rounds of revisions, which allow you to send a list of changes in each version of the design back with additional changes. The result is that you get the website you have always wanted. Best of all, these revisions are a FREE part of our design package!
Top 6 Reasons Your Church Should Be Live Streaming
There are a lot of advantages to recording and then editing your church's services, as opposed to live streaming. So why live stream? Here are six compelling reasons.
“Why should we live stream? We put all our services on YouTube after we record them and it works fine for us.” That was a recent question in one of the many online church tech groups.
Admittedly, this seems like a good question, because there are a lot of advantages to recording and then editing as opposed to live streaming. Streaming live is hard. It takes more resources (human, technical, and financial). Quality is hard to maintain. You can do a lot more with a week to edit a worship service than with the split-second decisions required by a high-quality live production.
There may a lot of reasons not to do live, but there are a good number of reasons to do it as well.
While it's great to have comments that your church leaders can respond to as time permits, there's something better about live interaction than discussions that take place over hours, days, weeks or even years.
Imagine a scenario where you leave a comment on a video. Months later someone responds to it. You've forgotten you ever watched the video, let alone commented on it. Now, you either ignore it or have to find time to see what happened in the video that caused you to comment and try and piece together the content of your thought process, which is now, long-forgotten.
Now, by contrast, imagine you're watching a live event and have a question. You type it in the comments and a moment or two later someone from the event answers it. You don't have to decide if you're going to find time to re-engage. You don't have to try and remember what you were thinking. It's all fresh.
There's a community that develops online when you regularly engage with events, too. You start to recognize people, if just by their usernames. Real friendships can develop and it's possible to start to care about what people feel and what's going on in their lives.
This is possible in an on-demand stream, but the shared feeling of laughing together (albeit at a distance) at the same joke or crying during the same story bonds people together.
These are specific to strangers sharing an experience, but it's not limited to them.
What about members of the military who may be deployed abroad? They can watch a live church service at the same time as family members who are still at home. Perhaps afterward, the family goes home for lunch and Skype with the missing parent. Now, around the dinner table, they can all talk about the same service, share what touched them, etc. It might be midnight where mom is deployed, but she feels like she just stepped out of the church and is having lunch with her family. For just a moment, she feels like she's home instead of half a world away.
Active duty military may be in the minority, but parents who stay home with sick children or people recovering from illnesses or even older church members (who don't travel as easily or as often as they used to) could all feel the same benefits.
Additionally, families may plan on visiting churches where they vacation, but joining together with a totally new congregation is different than experiencing worship with your own. With a live stream, you can join with your church, even at a distance.
The benefits don't end there. From a strictly practical standpoint, events have registration deadlines. It doesn't matter whether you either tend to drag your feet until the last moment, or just missed past announcements that the retreat you've been looking forward to is about to close for people to attend. A live announcement could be the difference between going with the group or staying home and kicking yourself for missing out.
There's just something different about life, too. Watching a video that's delayed just isn't the same as participating live. Ask any sports fan, “Why not just TIVO the Super Bowl and we'll go out for supper? You can watch it later.” They may not be in the stadium, but a recorded game isn't the same as a live one. Likewise, recorded church isn't the same as knowing that you're singing with your brothers and sisters as they too are worshipping God.
Keeping in the habit
The Bible tells us not to neglect gathering together (Hebrews 10:25, for example). Life sometimes gets in the way, though. A work trip, followed by a vacation, and then a sudden death in the family can make a week you overslept turn into a month with no church.
You might not mean to start a bad habit, but people don't go from running marathons to sitting on the couch by saying, “I'm just gonna skip training for a couple of years.” No, they miss one day and then a week and then a month.
That's how people break the church habit, too. A live stream provides another opportunity to keep from missing a week when you don't intend to, but life forces you to be away.
There's outreach potential as well. Young parents might think they need to find a church “for the children,” but soon find they need God, too. People of parenting age will, by and large, check out a church's website and live stream (if the church has one) before they take the risk to attend in person.
That's possible with an on-demand video, but it's also possible to skip around, missing context and deciding that based on one remark a church isn't right for them when it would be, had they watched it unfold.
Just as many people watch television shows on-demand, instead of live, there's still a place for a weekly upload of your church's sermon. Still, there are some clear benefits to live. Don't dismiss it as too much work or too expensive. Whether it's a person who has to miss church, someone new who's checking your church out for the first time, or someone else, live streaming is a ministry that will help some people more than an on-demand recording. It's worth the time and trouble for that reason.