This is #4 in this series about making a better website. The big idea is that your website needs to tell a story. If you are not the hero, see #2 in this series, then what is your role as a church? What is our role as a Church Management System provider? The answer: We are the guide.
All great stories have a hero with a problem who needs help. Along comes Yoda (Star Wars), Dumbledor (Harry Potter), Gandolf (Hobbit) or Aslan (Narnia) to show the hero the way. In Storybrand, Donald Miller, points to two qualities essential for good guides: empathy and competence.
One of the reasons people like Churchteams is because several of us were pastors or admins and all of us are active volunteers in our church. So, when people call for help, we've had the same problem and can empathize with them. When we think about development priorities we think about what it would be like to use it as a pastor, admin or volunteer. There's a connection there. Empathy.
Can people who are broken, lost or wandering come to your church website and feel like these people understand because they have been where I am? Can they identify with you as a journeyer who is simply a few steps ahead on the trail? Or, do they click away thinking these people wouldn't understand my life? I wouldn't fit in.
Empathy makes the connection, but competence tells the hero there is hope. You become a guide by coming alongside the hero at their point of need, listening to them and drawing out the deep waters of their heart (Proverbs 20:5). Then through prayer, experience and understanding of scripture you demonstrate that you've walked others down this same path. This is the where personal testimonies can be so powerful on your website. They show people that there is hope. Others have been where they are and found a way out. And the church or a particular ministry was pivotal in that. Testimonies establish your competence.
So, build a better website by building into it a sense that your church and ministries can empathize with the person who has found their way to your storefront on the Cloud. Then share some stories of life change to give people hope. You are not their hope. You are the guide to their hope. As the guide, your job is to introduce the plan. That's #5 in this series.