From time to time it is good to take a look at your buildings and try to see them from the point of view of a first-time visitor. Here are some of the points often made in Mission Consultancies.
- Would a passer-by at any time of day or night be able to see immediately when regular and special events are happening?
- Would a passer-by be able to contact help from the church?
- Would a passer-by know from the appearance of the building that church actually happens here?
- Would somebody new arriving for an event see that the event is happening and where to come in?
Here are just a few obvious pointers for making the best use of the publicity opportunities on church premises:-
- Permanent Exterior Signs – name, logo, web address, contact telephone number (a mobile phone bought for the purpose rather than the Minister’s home phone number).
- (Be aware of the regulations on Advertising Consent covering adverts and signs in public places).
- Direction signs on nearby streets if permitted.
- Banners for special occasions.
- Pavement A-frames while events are happening.
- External notice boards with changing content: Christian message posters and advertising events.
- Internal notice boards and literature racks.
- Internal signs directing visitors to toilets, creche room etc
- Signs on doors with the names you actually use for the rooms (so if everybody calls it “the small hall” it won’t be labelled “Wilkins Memorial Room”).
One further remark – have you considered OPENING THE CHURCH during the week? Some churches open regularly e.g. during lunch times as an “Oasis” for local workers offering a quiet space as well as tea and coffee. On particular occasions many people appreciate a place of quietness, prayer and reflection, for example on Remembrance Day, in Holy Week, during national and international humanitarian crises and times of mourning, and so on. Some people find the symbolism of lighting a candle helpful.