5 ways churches can use Pinterest

October 15, 2013

By Natalie Bannon - umcom.org

By now, you’ve probably heard of Pinterest. The social network that allows you to collect an organize the things you love in a visual manner has more than 50 million users—and that number continues to grow. Not bad for a network that’s only three years old. With that growth comes new ideas and ways to use it beyond just pinning do-it-yourself craft ideas. It’s gaining interest among churches and for good reason. Here are five ways you can use Pinterest to engage your congregation.

1. Plan
Use Pinterest when you’re planning an event. For example, Imagine No Malaria has boards dedicated to movie-watching parties that raise awareness for the cause. There’s a themed recipe board and one for activities to get kids involved. Additionally, there’s a board showcasing Imagine No Malaria events across the connection. It’s a great place to share ideas. You might also want to consider Pinterest when planning Vacation Bible School or Sunday school activities.

2. Inspire
Help your congregation get a daily dose of inspiration by pinning and re-pinning Scripture and moving quotes. A quick peek at this board on The United Methodist Church’s account will give you some ideas.

3. Focus
It’s so cliché, but so true—a picture really is worth a thousand words. Take advantage of the visual opportunity that Pinterest offers by highlighting ministries and mission projects that your church or conference supports. This can help you boost involvement. Check out Holston Conference as an example. They have a “causes we care about” board. Another great one is the “mission opportunities” board from UMC Fayetteville New York.

4. Share
Which books or study series would you recommend to your members or visitors? Don’t just tell them, show them and provide a link or way for them to get the resources. Research shows that Pinterest can actually drive e-commerce sales. Create a board dedicated to your favorite reads. Check out White’s Chapel UMC. They have a “books worth reading” board.

5. Involve
Engage your congregation and Pinterest followers by asking them to submit photos or artwork to include on a special board. For example, during Lent, Rethink Church launched a photo-a-day challenge and invited friends to submit a photo-a-day and tag them on Instagram or Twitter. The words, based on the lectionary, were accompanied by a brief devotion. Rethink Church then posted the tagged photos to Pinterest for everyone’s reflection and enjoyment. This challenge resulted in more than 300 new followers for Rethink Church on Pinterest.

That’s it! Let us know other ways your church is using Pinterest. Share your tips in the comments. And check out other videos at youtube.com/mycomtips.

Click HERE to view the UMCOM Pinterest video.