Christian Stereotypes in Social Media (and how to avoid them)

Christian content in the social media world is rare. You’re more likely to see a Buzzfeed top 10 article on your timeline, or the latest gossip on the Jay-Z and Solange situation than a prayer or testimony. But, on the slight chance that we do see Christian content, it usually makes us want to roll our eyes. Admit it.

“Jesus doesn’t love you if you don’t share this.” “Like this if Jesus is in your heart.” Or “Don’t let the devil win! Share this post for Jesus!”

Give. Me. A. Break. This can’t be real, but unfortunately it’s true. So how can we write good content that is meaningful and useful for Christians?

First, you need to establish what stereotypes you want to avoid. Maybe it’s the idea of asking for shares/likes. Maybe it’s the idea of exploitation (unethically using a picture of a starving child to gain a social following). Or maybe it’s the idea of being a money hungry church/organization. Whatever stereotypes may exist, put them on a list, and STAY AWAY from them.

Second, understand who your audience is. Is your audience Christian, or are you trying to get them to accept Jesus Christ into their hearts? Those two audiences are completely different. For an audience that does not know Jesus, content should be very basic. But for already established Christians, you can dive deep into many Christian topics. By knowing exactly who your audience is, you can focus on content that actually matters and avoid the clichés and stereotypes.

Finally, keep your mission close to heart. WHY do people want to follow your social accounts? Is it because the scriptures resonate with your audience? Or the daily devotional videos give a great perspective to start out the day. Whatever “it” is, remember it! Many Christian brands lose sight of this – and their content reflects it. You don’t want to appear all over the place with random content—you want to be the resource that someone needs to bring them closer to God. The main thing is to stay true to your mission, if you do this, stereotypes shouldn’t be a problem.  

 

This post was written by Sarah Boyd. Sarah is a Social Media Specialist with Media Connect Partners.

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