It is no secret that we are becoming more desensitized to advertising. These days we automatically tune out most of the ads we see–digital ads get lost in social media noise, and flyers get tossed into the junk mail pile or the trash. So, how do we tell people about the fantastic events at our church with a limited budget and help?
St. Paul’s Cathedral has started a Meet the Neighbors Walk Program–an intentional, purpose-driven way to communicate with people living in the immediate area of the church, showcasing the activities beyond the regular church services that might attract our neighbors to experience the church community.
“We chose specific neighborhoods within one mile of the Cathedral. By obtaining precinct maps and lists from a data vendor, we can go door to door in an organized way, and we know the names of the residents,” said Susan Jester.
St. Paul’s Cathedral usually prints 500 large postcards and door hangers that showcase an easy-to-attend event. In September, the Cathedral focused on the Blessing of the Animals. This month, the Meet the Neighbors Team will distribute door hangers inviting neighbors to The Good News Festival on December 10.
“We picked a time frame in the late afternoon when people were coming home and walking their dogs. We distributed all 500 pieces over two weeks. There are many opportunities to meet neighbors and leave a card or door hanger. We have also found some folks who live in the highrises that are willing to distribute our cards or door hangers in the building,” said Jester.
St. Paul’s Cathedral’s attendance for these events was up about 20% this year. The walks are organized and strategically planned with printed materials, organization of walkers, and a focus on the immediate neighborhood.
Printed door hangers force people to stop and take notice thanks to their eye-catching positioning. Instinctively removing a door hanger before entering their homes–looking at it for at least a few seconds. In those few seconds, the advertisement captures their attention–possibly retaining their interest long enough for them to attend an event–maybe your event.
St. Paul’s will continue this program as Evangelism Ministry after the Good News Festival. It is a proven way to meet new people in their neighborhood. A successful tool that helps reach out in a non-religious way and invite folks into learning the Way of Love.
“We are fortunate at the Cathedral in that we have all kinds of space and various events, music, social justice, kids events, free organ concerts, and events we have created to generate local interest in coming to the Cathedral. But the Good News Festival is a perfect opportunity to reach out to your local neighborhood and business community to hear two world-class speakers and some great music and fellowship hosted by their local church–your church,” said Jester.
If you would like door hangers to share the Good News Festival in your local neighborhood, please contact Director of Communications Chris Tumilty at firstname.lastname@example.org. The Diocese is happy to help you share this event with your community. Susan Jester and the team are happy to answer questions or help you strategize a Meet the Neighbors Walk program for your local church anytime.
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