Let’s talk about the second one for a moment. What do people see when they drive by your church facility? Believe it or not, for the average person, they probably don’t even notice. If they are ingrained in their route, they probably drive right past your building without giving it a second thought. How can the church reach out to those people who make the journey past the church building on a regular basis? Here are five suggestions:
Invest in a sign: Be sure your sign is up to date, clear and well positioned. The sign should include information such as contact info and service times. You, of course, know where and what the building is, but don’t assume anyone else in town does. Change the message often.
Keep the grounds spruced up: Make sure that your grounds are well kept. Just like any building, curb appeal makes or breaks the perception of the general public.
Make your building as available as you can to community groups: Every couple of months, we have the Blood Mobile parked right in front of our church building for a community blood drive. The Boy Scouts, AA and many others community groups utilize the space in our facility. There are not too many times when you drive by and see a totally empty parking lot. Make your facility available.
Large guest parking signs / clearly marked parking lots: Well lighted, clearly marked parking lots with guest signs will be a subconscious invitation to those driving by. It says ‘we are ready for you.’ And if it’s your first time, you get the best spot.
Banners / Large Yard Signs for special events – as often as you can: Even with a sign, people get used to it as they drive by. Connect with someone who can help create banners for special events and worship services. Even large yard signs will help aid in the process of a new message getting across. Be careful. Just as nice banners will help draw attention to the ministry and the facility, homemade, poorly made banners will also draw attention to the ministry – but it’s the kind of reputation you don’t want. Spend the extra $50-$75 per year to get new banners.
Of course, there’s much more to the church than the appearance of the building, but the little things add up. Do what you can to allow your building to aid in the message you present to the community.