Heading into my first full decade of doing business as Ministry Marketing Solutions, I am happy for all that I have seen in the world of Christian publicity. But on the other hand, I am saddened by the ego-starved “gospel celebrities” it has created. I mean, when did the authors and preachers try to outshine the TRUE Source?
When I first stepped out of the corporate boat to this “calling” to help authors-with-a-Message market themselves, I struggled. I personally took a pay cut (really pay halt for the first few years) and personally sacrificed a lot to make it work.
But I knew God called me to this arena and I remained faithful giving the best I had to ministers, churches, Christian authors & publishing companies. My mission: To Market the Message in Excellence. I stay true to my mission – helping those who are serious to brand better, market more consistently and learn how to use technology to expand their ministry. (see http://www.ministrymarketingsolutions.com/)
But over the last decade, I have seen some things that would shock and amaze most. Ministry Marketing has changed – it’s more competitive. And when there is competitiveness, it breeds jealous and envy. And where there is envy, you get confusion and you know that’s where all evil work lurks.
My prayer for 2010 and beyond for those in the industry of ministry:
1. To know that no matter how wonderful you write or how pretty your website is, if you do not have the right heart motive – it won’t fly. If you are “Christian” because you think there is a “market” for your stuff and you’ll make a ton of dough – you’ll be in for a shock. God don’t like ugly . So, don’t try pimp or play with God’s people. Playing with fire will get you burnt.
2. To learn how to represent JESUS in a contemporary, fresh and creative way. Know that the standard you give to your “regular” job is even higher when you put a “Christian” label on it. Our “brand” can change lives. So, my prayer is that authors and ministry leaders take the time or invest the money to make it as professional possible. If vulgar hip hop artists spend tons of money on branding – why can’t a Christian? It just takes creativity and the right team. Image matters even when you are trying to attract people to Gospel. Who would want to attend a church that is broke down? Consequently, who would want to read a book with a cover that is “jacked up” or a hot mess? Step it up. Don’t copy the world – out do ‘em! Our God is greater.
3. To learn how to work together and create synergy energy. There is strength in numbers – and an anointing when we combine God-given talents and resources. So many ministries and Christian authors tend to think they are the only one hearing from God. Not true. God wants His people to work as one body jointly fit together. This is hard for many because they want to get all the credit or be in the spotlight – well, you can get the spotlight and miss the real applause from the one who matters the most - JESUS! My prayer is that I quit getting so many emails asking me to help them get on the New York Times best-seller list or Oprah – and they concentrate on what God really told them do. God will provide provision for the vision. Trust HIM. I pray that greed be removed from the heart of ministry leaders and they concentrate on doing purpose. In doing purpose, it may take a team of folk to complete it – and that’s good. It’s about a movement. It’s about unity. It’s about something bigger than you.
When you contact a marketing company – as with anything – pray first. Know why you want to hire a firm and how much you’re willing to pay. Keep your expectations realistic. Don’t expect them to build your platform in 3 weeks. Anything that is sustaining will take time. There are no over-night successes. And then, look at the company’s track record and see who they have partnered with in the past. Their associations matter because you can see where you “fit” or if you will fit at all. You can tell a lot about a person by the company they keep.
Finally, select a company that will help you get to where you need to go based on what God told you – FOR this season. And honor that company by being professional and having integrity when engaging their services. Stay true to the vision that God gave you, be diligent and He will bring it pass. Remember, humility before honor.
Free resources: See http://www.pamperryprcoach.com/too and join http://www.chocolatepagesnetwork.com/com!
Pam Perry PR
Hear the Synergy Energy podcasts at: http://www.blogtalkradio.com/ministrymarketingsolutions