14 Things Every Communications Director Needs to Know

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If you work on the communications or media team at a church, ministry, or nonprofit, your job is to share the story of your organizations to the local community and sometimes the world.  While a pastor or leader may speak to the local congregation or supporters, your job is to take that message and share it on a much bigger platform.  To do that well, here’s a list of critical things you and your team need to know: 

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Mastering Media Is Knowing What Each Platform Does Best

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Too many people use media randomly, with no real strategic vision. Perhaps a friend recommended local TV, or a board member suggested billboards, or a church youth director likes social media. All these platforms and others are important, but they question is: Why? While I could write many books on the subject, here’s a short list of what differentiates some of the major media platforms:

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Five Commandments for Becoming a Media Savvy Pastor

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As a media consultant, I have the opportunity to help some of the largest churches and ministries in the country create effective, high quality media outreaches. In most cases, they are experienced, committed Christian leaders who understand the value and the power of the media.  But I also have the opportunity to spend time with less experienced pastors and ministry leaders who feel just as called to use media in a meaningful way, but have serious questions like: 

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I’m So Happy to See A Public Service Announcement About this Important Issue

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Hat tip to Chandra Hope, a Creative Director at Cooke Pictures for bringing this important video to my attention.  If you’re a professional communicator, then you know how serious this issue really is today.  I hope you’ll share this post and let’s go out there and make a positive difference!   Take a look:

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Are You Ready for a Public Relations Nightmare?

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If you missed my video during the Nine’s Conference, then you can view it here.  I was asked to speak for a few minutes to Church, ministry, and nonprofit leaders about what they should be thinking about in order to avoid a “PR Nightmare.”  Here’s what I recommended.  I’d love to know your response:

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Is Your Communications Budget Slim To None?

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From time to time I invite great communications and media experts fill in with guest posts.  This post is from someone I consider the most thoughtful and effective church communications director in America – Kem Meyer.  Kem was formerly Communications Director at Granger Community Church in Granger, Indiana and today is consulting on her own.  In this post, she shares some thoughts that will speak to everyone who works in a church, ministry, or nonprofit setting.  What if your communications budget is slim to none?  Here’s her answer:

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Ten Ideas to Be A More Effective Communications or Media Director

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1.  Find a mentor and get better advice.  Seek out another media director who’s programs, campaigns, or events you admire and begin a relationship with him or her.  Stop making the same mistakes others have already made, and learn from other people’s success (and sometimes failure.)

2.  Watch more TV (not religious TV either).  Study contemporary graphic styles, directing techniques, and editing methods.  You’ll discover that “page turn” wipes stopped about 10 years ago, flying boxes went out even earlier, and many other things that will surprise you!

  Let’s stop

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Is “Occupy Wall Street’s” Strategy Working?

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Whatever you think about the Occupy Wall Street Movement, it’s instructive to take a look at their strategy.  Today, anyone who needs to engage the larger culture to share an important message needs to think seriously about issues like perception, platforms, competition, timing, passion, and more.  At our company, Cooke Pictures, our first job is to help our clients get noticed in a crowded, cluttered marketplace of ideas.  Then, it’s to get that target audience to embrace or act on those ideas.  From that perspective, here’s a few

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