18 to 58 in a year…
It may not sound like much if you don’t know what these numbers represent. However, if you knew that this was the increase in a specific event at a small parish in Philadelphia it might propel you to ask “tell me more”.
We have a client in Flourtown, PA – a small Franciscan parish lead by Father Jim. Pro-nounce® produces their weekly announcements. In the fall of 2016 we had been helping them promote an event for about a month prior to the event. For several years in a row the event garnered all of about 15-19 attendees. They decided to see what properly announcing something might do for the event. Starting about a month out from the event, it was a small footnote in their regular announcements. As the event drew closer more details were added. Father Jim noticed a bit of chatter about the event among the parishioners. He also knew that they were sharing on FaceBook and online, etc.
Because of the chatter, the parish planned for about ten people more than last year and had what they thought were the proper amount of table, chairs, volunteers, etc.
On the evening of the event Father Jim showed up to see how it was going and he saw panic on the yes of the volunteers. Here’s a short version of the conversation:
FJ: Hey Betty (name change to protect the innocent) how is it going?
Betty: I can’t talk right now, this is nuts!
FJ: What’s going on, why are you in a panic?
Betty: Well, we planned for a maximum of 30 people, I can’t talk right now, gotta get more tables.
FJ: Well how many showed up?
FJ: Okay then, all hands on deck.
Here’s the point, the chatter, sharing, conversation starts with announcing it and leading people along to an event that matters in their lives. It doesn’t have to be all night prayer, or a healing service – those are great too – but it does have to engage your community, draw them together, create a space for them to commune together, help one another. Create the event, promote it, nurture it, staff it and watch what happens.