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At the beginning of January 2016, after poor attendance of Brittany Wiggs' first meeting at a local high school in Gainesville, she decided to take a less traditional route to invite students to the weekly Cru meeting. Through the use of Instagram, she had a meeting with more than 50 students in attendance.
Create a unique Instagram account for your ministry. Use your organization’s branding to legitimize the account.
Include in your profile a website for your ministry and a short biography of what you are about.
Create a post for your account that invites those new to your account to your next meeting or event.
Reach out on Instagram to the target audience you are hoping to reach. For example, those wanting to create a ministry at a certain high school should target students who go to that school. Start with student you already know, then move to those that the students are following.
If you can get a student or someone else who knows your target audience, ask them to help find people to follow. Delegation will help those in your ministry feel involved and valuable and will ensure that you are following the right people.
You can also tag those that you are targeting in the post you publish on Instagram so that the picture ends up in their news feed.
Post one or two times a day. It doesn’t have to be completely spiritual. Use materials that can be reposted, inspirational quotes, photos from your meetings. Use trusted organizations to find material like Cru, YoungLife, She Reads Truth.
“You can do it,” said Brittany. “Anyone is able to use social media. It does take a little bit of research but why not? It took me an hour to add content. We had 50 plus students pack out a room after I reached out to them on Instagram. Several students were reached that we would never be able to talk to if it weren’t for Instagram.”
Following the success of the first movement, which has regularly had 50 students attend, Brittany was contacted through Instagram’s direct messaging by 10 students at a nearby high school who were interested in starting a Cru movement at their school.
“Just give this to God,” Brittany said. “Let Him do what He wants to do through it. He can do mighty things. He’s given us social media as a tool. It’s just amazing what you can do through it.”
Looking to learn how to use Instagram to build relationships with your students? Check out this four-part Instagram series hosted by Emily Assibu and Cru High School.
Do you love Jesus, love your friends and spend hours on Instagram? Staying up to date with Instagram’s features can help you bring those things together in life-changing ways.
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