Category Archives: ministry

Is Your Vision Drivng Your Brand?

As a marketing consultant, I often work with people who are a little bit uncomfortable with the idea of branding and marketing themselves.  I very often hear things like:

  • I don’t like marketing and advertising.  It feels manipulative.
  • Spending time on marketing means I’m not putting my energy into my real work.
  • Promoting myself feels egotistical, like I’m out to get something.
  • I don’t want to shove my name or my product in people’s face.

I get it.  I really do.  If you are coming from a place of trying to convince someone to buy something they neither want nor need, marketing can come across as manipulative.  If you are trying to decide what to make or sell based on what the market says people want, that can feel like a distraction from your real work or a dilution of your vision.  But here’s my question:

Is your brand driving your vision? Or is your vision driving your brand?

In good marketing, vision comes first.  Brand is used to communicate the vision, to raise the real work into a place of visibility and public awareness.  Who you are, when communicated beautifully and authentically, sells itself.  Then marketing becomes simply a use of tools to help people find that authentic vision-driven brand that they so resonate with.  It becomes about creating content that inspires your natural audience, whether they ever hire you or not.  It becomes about presenting every aspect of your business is a voice, style and method that says something about who you are and why they might benefit from getting to know your brand.  When vision drives the brand, marketing is a two-way communication and the product sells itself.  All you have to do is be yourself.

So, here’s the call to action:

Get really, really clear on your vision.  

  • Who are you, as a business?
  • What do you do?
  • How do you benefit your clients?
  • What makes what you do special or different from your competitors?
  • What’s the highest experience you envision for your clients?
  • Who are the ideal clients for you?
  • What do they want and need, and how does that match up with who you are?

When you know the answers to these questions, branding is easy and marketing is a joy.

How to Make Customized Social Media Graphics from our Free Templates

At Mad Science Consulting, we love to see beautiful graphics that are perfectly branded to highlight the best qualities of a company or organization.  Our “Marketing for Ministry” initiative puts special focus on making this especially easy for independent ministries in the world.  Whether you are a minister, the communications director of a church (or temple or spiritual center, etc.) or a faith-based coach or counselor, we want you to succeed!  Gorgeous graphics do not have to be terribly expensive or difficult to achieve.  In fact, we’ve made it as simple as possible, with this offer:

Download FREE social media graphics templates for your ministry here.

We’re giving away twelve beautiful graphics specifically designed to promote ministry on social media — Bible quotes, inspiration quotes, Sunday service invitation, new member welcome and more — in a variety of styles and looks.  Every graphic is high quality and will make your ministry look good!

We’ve provided two versions of each image: One is a branded mock-up, included to show you where to place your branding information.  It will look like this:

The second image is a template .jpeg for you to upload to canva.com so you can add your own information.  It will look like this:

 

You’ll notice that the filename of the template image includes the font style, font size and color number we recommend for your branding information.  (By branding information, we mean the customized information you want to add.  It might be your church name, your web site, your name, etc.)  Below, you’ll find our infographic instructions on how to use our  FREE templates (get them here) in www.canva.com.  Once you’ve played in Canva, you’ll see how simple it can be to create amazing graphics for your ministry!

 

Get your free social media graphics templates now!

Seven Tips for Amazing Social Media Graphics

Graphics are essential for social media success.  With the rise of professional graphic use in social media marketing (74% of social media marketers report using custom visuals in every post), graphics are a must.  But they can’t just be any graphics — you have to make them great.  Not everyone has a graphic design team on standby, but that’s okay.  Graphic excellence can be achieved with Canva.com or Adobe InDesign, whether you went to art school or not.  Just follow my my seven guidelines for amazing graphics for your social media empire, and you’ll be fine.

SAMPLE GRAPHIC

Here’s a graphic I made recently for a Wednesday evening program at a spiritual center.  It looks cool, right?  You have all the info you need.  (Additional details can always be added via link in the posting text.)  I’d want to go hang out with those folks and have a conversation, wouldn’t you?  Let’s break down the reasons this graphic works so well.

 

 

SQUARES RULE

Maybe it’s because they fit the Instagram and Facebook formats so beautifully.  Maybe it’s because they evoke a minimal 1940’s design aesthetic.  Maybe it’s just because they look cool.  Whatever the reason, square graphics look fresh and relevant.  Switching from landscape to 800×800 square formats automatically ups the hip-factor of your graphic, with no effort at all.

HIGH QUALITY PHOTOS

If you’re using photography in your graphics (and you should be), please please please please please use high quality photography.  You can buy beautiful stock photos for a pittance from iStock, or you can take the time to get serious with your own photography skills.  (Seriously, you can take amazing pictures on a smart phone if you know what you’re doing. Check out this Hubspot phone photography blog: http://tinyurl.com/mle2f9c) Use high resolution. Clean them up in Photoshop or a similar program. Everything rests on the quality of the image.

MINIMAL IMAGES

Keep it clean, folks.  One image is best.  Skip the frames and borders. Skips the layers of images. Skips the tiny corner add-ons.  As a general rule, less is more.  This isn’t a flyer or a poster.  It’s one graphic image.  It should stand alone as a strong visual.  Resist the urge to fancy it up.  On a phone, all those details will just look muddy. Clean, clean, clean.

MINIMAL FONTS

Raise your right hand and repeat after me: I will only use a maximum of two fonts per graphic! This graphic actually only uses one font.  If you feel the need for additional variation, try using all caps in some elements, or all lower case. (Note the all lowercase website at the bottom.)  You can even vary the size of your text to keep things lively.  But here’s the God’s honest truth: if your graphic needs more than two fonts to be interesting, you need to make a more interesting graphic.

MINIMAL TEXT

Write what you absolutely need and not one word more.  This graphic has what, where, when and how to find out more.  That’s all you need.  Any additional detail would be lost.  As I mentioned earlier, you can always add a link to an informational flyer in the post text.  Every detail does not need to be on the graphic.  Fewer words means bigger (i.e. readable) text.

SHEER GENIUS

I’m a big fan of using one big photo as the basis of a graphic, which doesn’t always loan itself easily to text placement.  This is why I love a translucent overlay panel.  You can still see the image underneath, but the text really pops.  This is the simplest thing in the world, but it will revolutionize your graphics if you use it well.

USE YOUR SPACE WISELY

This event had a long name, and I had a tiny space for text.  What’s a girl to do?  I rotated the title portion of the text and used the extra vertical space.  It allowed me to use a nice large font size.  It’s super readable, looks great and adds to the hip factor.  I also played with the justification.  When text extends from the left side of the image, I like to try a left justification.  I’ll usually also try centering, just to see how it looks.  Look at all the options before you decide, but in the end trust your gut.

And there you have it, folks: seven guidelines for amazing social media graphics. You deserve to have graphics that are as awesome as you are!

Lezli Goodwin is Creative Director for Mad Science Consulting.  She finds extreme joy in helping clients find their footing in the nebulous areas of social media, blogging and small business marketing.  Follow her on Twitter @madscienceinc   www.madscienceconsulting.com

10 Ways to Use Facebook Live to Promote Your Ministry [Infographic]

Facebook Live is the hottest new phenomenon in social media, and you should be using it to promote your ministry and connect your community.  Video is important, but live native video is essential.  Why?  Because viewers comment ten times more on live video than on recorded video.  Because live video is watched three times longer on average than recorded video.  Because Facebook prioritizes Facebook Live video, showing it to more of your followers than any other kind of post.  Facebook Live is easy to use, and there are tons of ways to utilize it in your community.  Here are 10 ways to use Facebook Live to promote your ministry:

 

Lezli Goodwin is Creative Director for Mad Science Consulting.  She finds extreme joy in helping clients find their footing in the nebulous areas of social media, blogging and small business marketing.  Follow her on Twitter @madscienceinc   www.madscienceconsulting.com

Fun & Easy Free Graphic Ideas For Social Media Marketing in Ministry [Infographic]

Social Media trends in 2017 are moving more and more in the direction of shareable graphics.  In fact, graphics use in social media marketing increased 130% between 2015 and 2016 alone.  The good news is that there are fun and easy ways to create custom graphics for your ministry that will only take a few minutes and won’t cost you a dime. Here’s are a few great ways to utilize free graphics in your ministry:

fun & easy (1)

 

Here are some fun examples that I made on www.quotescover.com.  In case you are wondering, each graphic took me less than two minutes to make!

Famous Quote Example:

SMMFM Quote example

 

 

Testimonial Example:

SMMFM Testimonial Example

 

 

Scripture Example:

SMMFM Scripture example

 

 

Question Example:

SMMFM Question example

 

Have fun creating free custom graphics for your ministry.  It will make a huge difference!

Lezli Goodwin is Creative Director for Mad Science Consulting.  She finds extreme joy in helping clients find their footing in the nebulous areas of social media, blogging and small business marketing.  Follow her on Twitter @madscienceinc   www.madscienceconsulting.com

Six Great Things to Post on Facebook to Build Your Ministry [Infographic]

Six Great Things to Post on Facebook to Build Your Ministry

 

Lezli Goodwin is Creative Director for Mad Science Consulting.  She finds extreme joy in helping clients find their footing in the nebulous areas of social media, blogging and small business marketing.  Follow her on Twitter @madscienceinc   www.madscienceconsulting.com