Say No to printed bulletins

Your church doesn’t need a printed bulletin (3 reasons)

Few good things came from COVID; except perhaps, many Pastors realized their church doesn’t need a printed bulletin. During that period of time, Churches couldn’t distribute printed bulletins because attendance went online; and when we returned, many stopped handing out printed materials.

And the church didn’t fail because of it! But, if the church doesn’t need a printed bulletin, how do people find out what’s going on? Is it even possible?

Yes. And here are 3 reasons why you don’t need to return to a printed bulletin (so resist the urge)!

  1. Ministry cost savings. Consider the paper cost, the design and layout time (which equates to cost), and the printing of multiple copies! A lot of our church resources go into the manufacturing and distribution of the printed bulletin. It would be one thing if the worship guide adequately informed our members — but almost two-thirds of those receiving the bulletin, don’t look at it at all. There has to be a better option for a church to educate members on things to do and know. There is!
  2. Preferred digital alternatives. Most of us had to use other information options during COVID. The easiest replacement? Producing a PDF that was downloadable via your email, social media, or website. But did people like it? Most don’t prefer to download PDFs or navigate through them online. Plus you still have to account for the design, editing, and layout time. And the information isn’t as functional as it should be. The best digital alternative? A website allows people to discover dynamic information easily. How? A church needs to have a trusted, simple website, with an event and news area. Then, with the help of digital magic (via meta tags); the ministry events and news items can automatically appear on a convenient calendar — or even better — on the ministry pages that it pertains to. More will discover them there than in a printed bulletin that’s only scanned!
  3. Changeability and portability. The most practical reason why a church doesn’t need a printed bulletin? Once the information is printed and ready for distribution, NOTHING can be easily changed. Instead, if an error is caught, or a ministry event needs last-minute changing on a digital platform, it can be done quickly with NO COST implications. And because most have gotten used to visiting websites to discover what they need, when they need it; it’s not a hard ask to tell people to visit the website for information. And remember, almost everyone has the convenience of your website in their pocket, purse, or on a nearby desk. No longer do they have to search for the printed bulletin!

NOTE: going digital with a church bulletin requires 3 things: a good, easy-to-navigate website, a Pastor who supports it and refers to it as a trusted source for all church-related information, and a “reminder mechanism” for pointing people to the website regularly: usually this is a weekly email with links or a stage announcement with someone referring interested members to the website for additional details.

Be Known for Something Church Branding Book (Post COVID edition)

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