An online magazine for pastors and church leaders.

Snapchat and Instagram have been getting a lot of attention lately, and rightfully so. But there’s another social media platform out there that still deserves some attention from churches.

Founded in 2002, this social media platform is older than Facebook, Twitter and even MySpace. This social platform was recently purchased by Microsoft for $26.2 billion. The site has more than 430 million users.

Since you?ve read the article headline, you already know that platform is LinkedIn. But why does LinkedIn matter to your church? And what are some practical ways to get involved? I?m glad you asked.

Lends credibility to your church

Perhaps the greatest asset that LinkedIn has compared to the other social media accounts is professional credibility. While other sites are rampant with anonymous or fake accounts, LinkedIn is perceived as more legitimate by comparison.

For your church, this is just another opportunity to provide accurate information about your location, website URL, mission and contact information.

When I started volunteering at my church, we had a LinkedIn account with incorrect information. No one on staff was even aware the account existed. You owe it to yourself to at least check and make sure you?re not accidentally spreading misinformation online.

Spread staff influence

One of the easiest ways to drive people to your LinkedIn company page (and there by your church website), is encouraging all staff members to create a LinkedIn profile. This is not only a way to promote your church, it?s an added benefit to the staff for professional development.

For church leaders, LinkedIn is a great opportunity to continue your ministry and become a thought leader. Any original content that is being created for websites or blogs can also be posted directly to LinkedIn as a way to spread your message to a different, professional audience.

Recruit staff talent

Knowing your audience is crucial across any social media platform. The same is true for LinkedIn. In this case, you know you?re dealing with a professional audience in a professional setting.

With that in mind, there is one piece of content that LinkedIn users consume more eagerly than all others: job opportunities.

If you?re not using LinkedIn for anything else, you should use it to post job openings at your church. While this isn?t an effective strategy to reaching people on LinkedIn, it is an instant boost to your candidate pool.

Promote volunteer opportunities

While job openings are the best bait for LinkedIn users, volunteer opportunities are relevant to both you and your audience. You can list volunteer opportunities directly on your LinkedIn page or link directly back to your website.

This allows you to showcase ways to get involved within your church, while also allowing current volunteers to feature their community service on their own profiles.

Helping volunteers showcase their involvement at your church provides a boost to their social profile and increases the exposure of your church page. That?s what we call a win-win.

Build community

Your church can add value to its members and the community at-large by providing valuable tools and resources. This can be as simple as sharing helpful tips through the content of your page.

Or this could also mean setting up a LinkedIn group where staff, volunteers and members can network with one another professionally. If your church already has a career ministry, this is a no-brainer for them to be able to begin reaching people.

Job advice and professional networking is a real-world need that people in your church have. By using LinkedIn to meet these needs, you?re providing real value to your community.

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