HomeDigital MinistryCommunication7 Steps to a More Successful Church Bulletin

7 Steps to a More Successful Church Bulletin

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The church bulletin is far from dead, in fact, it’s alive and well at most churches. It holds treasured information including weekly announcements, budget details and attendance records, in addition to upcoming events, contact details for church staff, and maybe even a handy “new guest” tear off form or half a dozen inserts. While some churches have moved away from print-centric communication, others rely on it greatly.

If you’re still creating a weekly bulletin, don’t worry, you’re not alone. Here are some ways to be strategic and ensure you have a successful church bulletin.

1) Be Intentional About What you Include

The bulletin is prime communication real estate for the life of your church. Because of this it tends to become an information dumping ground. It’s easy to overwhelm our readers with too many announcements and event details.

Take a step back and filter the information through the eyes of a guest or non-Christian. It doesn’t have to be wordy, but it does need to serve a ministry purpose.

  • Is this information pertinent?
  • Will the reader understand what the ministry is about?
  • How can they get involved?
  • Is the bulletin the best way to share this information?
  • Is there a more intentional way to share this with the right group of people?

2) Repurpose Your Content

Let’s be honest. Time is our most valuable resource. You don’t have lots of it to spare.

So, don’t reinvent the wheel every time. Any time you work on a bulletin announcement, look for other ways you can share the same information.

Your listener has only read the announcement once and they aren’t tired of it yet. The challenge is, you’ve lived with it for a while, so it feels like you’ve conveyed it a lot of times. The reality is, you haven’t, your church is just getting up to speed about the announcement.

3) Confirm Your Information

Communication success is in the details. There is nothing worse than having to take valuable service time to verbally correct a bulletin announcement.

Take time to confirm dates, times, contact details and more when you put your bulletin together. You’ll be glad you did.

4) Make it Scannable

I hate to say it, but people aren’t reading your bulletin. Most are quickly browsing, looking for details that interest them and ignoring the rest. Help them find what is most important to them by visually directing them.

You can get creative by…

  • Highlighting ministry names in bold
  • Sharing details in a regular font
  • Identifying contact details or registration info in italics
  • Verbally highlighting the most pertinent announcements

5) Add Visual Elements

Our society is becoming increasingly visual and expects supporting images alongside information. Avoid using clip art, and look for images to reinforce your message or give your reader context for the announcement.

Need some inspiration? The Church Media Resource List has free and low cost image providers.

6) Let it Breathe

You don’t need to fill every square inch of the bulletin with something. Find a balance between the volume of information, the font size and the blank white space on the page.

It will help your reader digest the information better and not get overwhelmed by the text.

7) Track Your Numbers

Get in the habit of tracking the number of bulletins you print each week and the number of leftovers. It will help you notice seasonal changes and holiday bumps, allowing you to better steward your resources in the future.

I’ve created a Bulletin Use Tracking Worksheet to help with this. There are places to put your numbers, plus notes about the specific day. Feel free to use it in your church.

What things are you doing to have a successful church bulletin?

 

Ryan Holck
Ryan Holckhttps://rad-ideas.com
Ryan is the founder of RAD Ideas and Graphics.Church. He works with churches and denominations to grow their ministry through graphic design and marketing strategy. Follow Ryan at RAD-Ideas.com.

7 COMMENTS

  1. “Anything you can do to hep people find the announcements they are most interested in.”
    This quote is from your article.
    Are you from the deep south? 🙂 Seriously, this typo creates a question about the reliability of your information.

    • Thanks, Mary Lou, for pointing out a minor flaw in this article. The sentence taken above was from a bullet point of information. I have clarified this bullet point to now read: “Verbally highlighting the most pertinent announcements”

      Bullet points need not be complete sentences, they are thoughts, ideas, or phrases.

      Comments by church people like you deeply sadden me. Pointing out a minor grammatical issue and calling into question my site and it’s validity is rude, unkind, and un-Christlike.

      If your pastor were to make a written or verbal mistake, would you call into question his ability to preach and lead your congregation?

      Let’s show each other simple kindnesses – both online and offline. I and my team work hard to provide free and valuable articles for church leaders. It is our calling and we are dedicated to improving and helping churches.

      May you have a blessed day,
      Lauren

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