Facebook is the big gorilla of social media.
And I love it.
Now I don’t love everything about Facebook.
For instance, its Messenger app is painfully intrusive.
I’ve tried it a couple of times but it wants to dominate my phone with invasive messages and I just can’t be bothered with it. So that means I sometimes miss Facebook messages and generally find the whole Facebook messaging thing underwhelming.
January 2016 UPDATE: I’m now using Facebook Messenger. I worked out how to stop all those notifications that were intruding into my space and got the app under my control. It’s meant to serve me not vice-versa. It’s a welcome addition to my social media world even if I occasionally neglect to reply.
JANUARY 2022 UPDATE: I now use Messenger extensively for connection with friends and ministry. It’s become an essential part of my toolkit.
Pay For Views
I don’t like the way Facebook keep changing their rules of engagement because it wants businesses and non-profits to pay for their posts to be seen by their customers.
Their algorithms are set in such a way that you will not see every post that your friends put on Facebook and they will not see every one of your posts.
However, the more likes and comments your post gets then the greater likelihood of that post being shown to more and more of your friends.
This has unfortunately curtailed the effective use of Facebook pages by churches. The free lunch is basically over.
However these things have not put me off Facebook and here’s the 10 reasons why I love Facebook.
Facebook helps me stay in my friend’s worlds especially people that I don’t see very often.
I get to step into their world and connect with their lives. In fact it’s amazing how often I’ll say to someone “Yes I saw that on Facebook”. While some people see that as intrusive I consider it helpful.
2. New Friends
I’ve made plenty of new friends through Facebook.
Some of these friendships are at an acquaintance level but I think that’s just a reflection of how relationships work in the physical world.
3. Ministry Opportunities
Social media apps like Facebook have opened up ministry doors for me.
In the last two years I’ve been interviewed on three different USA based podcasts because of my activity on social media.
After one of those podcasts I connected with a Christian leader in Florida via Skype who heard me and wanted to chat further about some things I had mentioned on the podcast.
Facebook has certainly helped me build rapport with pastors and led to ministry opportunities.
Facebook can help you grow a healthy church.
4. Active Engagement
I love Twitter because of the way I can access news and sport so easily by following reporters and news and sports channels but I find the engagement level is very low compared to Facebook.
Far more people comment and like my Facebook posts than anything I post on Twitter.
Some of this engagement is light hearted but I’ve also been involved in serious discussions about politics and leadership.
I find the engagement with people one of the best elements of Facebook.
5. Facebook makes me laugh
I see jokes, funny videos and discussions on Facebook that bring a smile to my face and even make LOL!
I think we all benefit from the stress-busting benefits of laughter so anything that makes me laugh is a good thing.
6. Provide Resources
Facebook gives me an opportunity to help resource pastors and leaders with interesting articles from various blogs.
Just as I find informative posts on Facebook I try to resource others in the same way.
7. Profile My Blog
Facebook drives an immense amount of traffic to my blog. In fact 79% of my blog traffic from social media channels comes from Facebook.
Without Facebook there’d be many people who wouldn’t discover my blog.
8. Paid Advertising
I’ve used Facebook ads to promote our 27 Ways to Grow a Healthy Church seminars and Di’s Conversations With a Pastor’s Wife seminars.
Facebook gives me an opportunity to promote my events in targeted ways.
Facebook ads can be effective but it’s best to get informed before investing your time and money.
9. Facebook Pages
Facebook gives you an option to setup a page for your church or ministry and also groups for your church members.
Your Facebook page (you can check out the Grow a Healthy Church Facebook page here) can be used as a platform for connecting members and informing new people about your church.
10. Facebook Groups
Facebook gives you an option to setup groups for your church members or departments of your church.
These groups can be open to anyone, closed (others can see the discussions but have to apply to join) or secret (all posts, comments and likes remain invisible to non-members and you have to be invited to join).
My wife Dianne, has a secret group for pastors’ wives and women in ministry.
If you’d like to join you’ll need to friend Dianne
on Facebook and ask for an invite.
You can learn more about Facebook Groups here.
With over one billion users Facebook is here to stay and leaders need to adapt to and utilise it as a ministry tool rather than ignore or reject it.
OK that’s my 10 reasons why I love Facebook.