Thursday , 19 October 2017
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Use social media to inspire, not advertise

Adam Weber - Embrace Church

Embrace Church Lead Pastor Adam Weber views social media as a way to speak the language of the fast-growing church’s young worshippers, as well as a way to spread the message of the church to a broader audience.

From Embrace’s start at Sunnycrest Church in 2006, the church’s physical congregation grew from 30 members to about 4,000.

But that’s just a fraction of the growth on social media.

Today, Embrace has more than 13,000 Twitter followers and more than 33,000 Facebook followers.

►Related: How a Sioux Falls church became the fastest-growing in America

►More: Read an excerpt of ‘Talking with God’ by Adam Weber

“Honestly, when we first started, it kind of felt foolish because we had 30 followers and just not many people active on Twitter,” Weber said of Embrace’s social media accounts.

Part of Embrace’s success online is because the church beat most other Sioux Falls churches to the punch in creating accounts.

Other churches weren’t engaged with Twitter when Embrace started, and Weber worked to fill that gap for people looking online for prayers or advice on which church to attend.

Embrace’s strategy on social media is to engage with users. They work to respond within an hour to users who pose questions online. They like and re-tweet posts that tag them, and they offer words of encouragement when they see someone posting about a car accident or a lost loved one.

Embrace also hired a communications director four years ago to focus on social media as part of their full-time responsibilities.

Weber’s main goal? Engage, don’t advertise.

“The change we’re trying to make now is to be less about announcements and more about trying to share experiences and encouragement,” Weber said. “I think that’s what people are looking for more and more.”

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