Years ago, churches were asking “Should our church have a website?” or “Should we use projectors and screens in our worship center?” To many, those questions seem almost laughable now. Today, eight in ten churches have a website, and the use of projectors in worship is estimated to be at more than 75%. For most, it is a given that you should have a church website and use IMAG (Image Magnification, or the use of projectors and similar technology) in worship.
If you’re looking for new ways to connect with your followers, digital signage is a tool that is sitting at the head of the technological curve. The question many churches are now asking: “Should our church embrace digital signage?”
The answer is yes, no matter the size of your ministry. Of course, digital signage, like a website, functions to provide information and value to viewers. There are several distinct advantages in using digital signage in your church as a primary way to share internal communication:
A new, flexible announcement board
Of course there still may be the need for the occasional church bulletin, many churches are adopting for more efficient way to communicate need-to-know information to their congregation – service times, special announcements, outreach programs, bible study times, even special offers or sales within a café or bookstore. Having digital signage available throughout your building makes it easy for members to stay informed and for visitors to get a feel for what the church’s vision and mission is like.
Bring a community together
Sharing information about member-owned businesses, recognizing staff members or highlighting the accomplishments of people throughout your church allows viewers to learn more about the area in which they live and serve.
Another useful aspects of a digital signage solution lies in the ability to utilize and update certain information dynamically. News feeds, local weather, and time information are a few of the examples of this kind of content a church can share with its congregation. In most cases you can format that information as lower third crawls, emulating the method used by news shows on broadcast networks. This way you can add to the value you bring by sharing relevant content either locally or globally.
Digital signage is much easier to update
In its simplest form, a digital signage solution consists of one or more Internet connected devices and a computer running digital signage software. Frequently, the “computer” is a very small form factor that is either attached to the display or mounted nearby to avoid having to have long video runs which in turn necessitates the use of some form of boosting or amplification of the video signal. Having one “computer” or digital signage box per screen allows for maximum flexibility in determining what content is shown on each screen, allowing you to customize the content on individual screens.
The beauty of this is your content is easy to update and modify. Slides and videos can be set to a schedule – eliminating the need for real time management. A digital signage solution worth its salt will allow you to program your screens via a cloud-based interface.
With digital signage, your ministry can share live video or stream on-demand content anywhere in your church or campus, at any time.
The ultimate value of course is that digital signage offers an ideal way for ministry communication that pays for itself in the saving of money and time with the costs associated with static displays and printed materials. There are quite a few ministries who already have the basic knowledge in creating content in PowerPoint or IMAG software (ProPresenter, Easy Worship, etc). Digital signage is a solution that allows you to leverage the communication to a greater level. Some solutions will allow you to incorporate information you have already created, a good digital signage solution will have templates and other features for you to easily present the info you are looking to share.
As it was with developing a church website a few years ago, in a short time, integrating digital signage in your church’s communication strategy will become an essential in communicating and connecting socially with your church’s community.