Want more people to visit your church, engage with your latest sermon series, believe the gospel, get baptized, or invite their friends and family to your latest outreach event?
If so, today’s podcast episode is for you. We’re discussing our favorite strategies for church copywriting that will help your church reach both your members and your community more effectively.
Whether you’re looking for huge church growth or you simply want to serve your existing members well, these tips for effective copywriting for churches will help you do just that.
Why Copywriting Matters for Churches
As a pastor or church leader, you may be thinking, “Why does copywriting matter? Can’t I simply share the good news of the gospel? Why do I have to spend time learning tips for effective copywriting for churches?”
Unfortunately, simply having a good message isn’t enough. You also need to find a way to communicate that message clearly to others in a way that inspires them to take action. And that’s where copywriting comes in.
Whether you’re writing words for your church website, email list, bulletin, or slides, you need to get good at copywriting if you hope for anyone to do what you’re asking them to do.
Consider this copywriting quote from Blair Warren: “People will do anything for those who encourage their dreams, justify their failures, allay their fears, confirm their suspicions, and help them throw rocks at their enemies.”
As a pastor, it’s your job to share the incredible news of the gospel, to help people experience real life transformation, and to throw rocks at our enemy, the devil.
And your success will be determined in large part by the words you use when describing what you want people to do.
This is why copywriting matters and why studying strategies for church copywriting is so important.
If your words aren’t effective at convincing people to take action – what’s the point of sharing them?
Copywriting is a Numbers Game
Let’s look at an example. Say you have 1,000 people on your church email list. The words you choose for your email subject line can make a dramatic difference in the number of people who open, read, and ultimately take action on whatever you’re emailing them about.
The same thing is true of your website copy. If you have 1,000 people who visit your church website, a good portion of them will leave automatically within a few seconds. Only a certain percentage of them will make it to the bottom of the page to see your call to action. Naturally, you want that number to be as high as possible.
As a pastor or church leader, even though you work in the nonprofit, faith-based world, you are ultimately in sales. It’s your job to sell people on the idea of visiting your church, becoming a member, getting baptized, or signing up for a class.
But unlike other forms of marketing, you have the greatest story to tell (the gospel) and the greatest “product” (the transformation that results from the in-dwelling of the Holy Spirit) in the history of mankind.
This is why copywriting matters – not just for marketers, but for churches as well.
You have a responsibility to learn tips for effective copywriting for churches because the more effectively you communicate the gospel message, the more lives will be transformed.
And learning effective strategies for church copywriting can help you do just that.
Tips for Effective Copywriting for Churches
Now that we’ve discussed why copywriting matters, let’s discuss some very practical tips for effective copywriting for churches you can put into practice right away.
1. Understand Your Target Reader
Before we can craft effective copywriting for churches, we first need to understand who we’re writing for. After all, if our words don’t resonate with the audience we’re trying to reach, it really doesn’t matter how impactful or how intentional we are with those words.
In marketing, this target reader is often referred to as a “reader avatar” or “ideal customer.”
You can find a great example of this by searching for Saddleback Church’s Saddleback Sam, but you’ll want to craft your reader avatar to the needs of your existing church and the new people you’re trying to reach.
Here are several factors you might consider when crafting your reader avatar:
- Your target reader’s age range
- Their life stage
- Their marital status
- Their job status
- Their financial situation
- Their housing situation
- Their children’s status
- The feelings they encounter
- The obstacles they encounter
- The various people, events, situations vying for their attention
- The other types of media they’re consuming
- How they spend their evenings, weekends, or other free time
- What motivates them
Keep in mind: If you try to craft one message that will appeal to everyone, it will appeal to no one. Every community is different and every church is unique, and that’s a beautiful thing!
The strategies for church copywriting you use should be informed by the exact people you’re hoping to reach – not by copying what you see other churches or marketers doing online.
2. Use Reader-Focused Language
Is your church messaging focused all around you?
For example: “join us,” “join our newsletter,” or “come to our event”?
If so, consider how you can rewrite your copy to be more reader-focused.
Instead of talking about your services, speak to their needs. Instead of talking about your programs, share how your programs will benefit them right where they’re at. Write in second-person, using the word “you.”
Consider what transformation your reader wants and how you can help them achieve that goal.
The goal of copywriting isn’t to share how wonderful you are, but to connect with the reader in a way that makes them want to take the next step with you.
3. Focus on the High-Traffic Copy
While it’d be wonderful if we had time to study all the best strategies for church copywriting and implement everything we learned in everything we write, for the vast majority of us, that simply isn’t realistic.
Instead, focus on using the tips for effective copywriting for churches you’re learning in the places that matter most – often, the first and last things you write.
- Your email subject line
- Your first sentence of your email
- The heading on your landing page
- The heading on your church mailer
- The title of your sermon series
- The title of your Youtube video
- Your call to action
- The p.s. at the end of an email
- The closing line of your sermon
While every piece of copy you write is important, the tips for effective copywriting for churches you’re learning will have the greatest impact here.
Bonus Tip: Use Coschedule’s free Headline Analyzer tool to write more effective headlines and email subject lines that drive more clicks and engagement with your emails and landing pages.
Additional Copywriting Resources
Want even more helpful strategies for church copywriting? We couldn’t possibly begin to cover all the great tips for effective copywriting for churches in just one article!
Here are a few additional resources we highly recommend for learning effective copywriting for churches.
1. Copywriting Secrets by Russell Brunson and Jim Edwards
Copywriting Secrets by Russel Brunson and Jim Edwards is a favorite among professional marketers, and it’s not hard to see why. While not written specifically for pastors, this book is full of practical tips for effective copywriting you can start implementing today. It’s written by two well-known marketing industry professionals who understand marketing well.
2. Copywriting that Sells by Ray Edwards
Want to write effective copy that inspires people to take action (without coming across as too salesy)? If so, you’ll love Copywriting that Sells by Ray Edwards. This book (another popular choice for professional marketers) is also full of practical tips for effective copywriting you won’t want to miss.
You can find Copywriting that Sells on Amazon here.
Looking for tips for effective copywriting for churches specifically? If so, be sure to check out FrontDoor.Church, where you can find a bunch of amazing church resources to help you implement the strategies for church copywriting you’re learning more quickly, easily, and effectively.