ChurchTechToday together with KidCheck, providers of secure children’s check-in systems, today announced the informative new ebook, “Technology Spotlight: Children’s Check-In.” This complimentary ebook was developed in partnership with ChurchTechToday to help churches understand the benefits technology, such as an electronic children’s check-in system, can bring to their children’s ministry. The book is written by Lauren Hunter, ChurchTechToday’s founder with Keri Wyatt Kent.
The ebook delivers a wealth of information and actionable best practice suggestions across a variety of topics that can easily be put into practice.
- Serving Children – a strong safety foundation, modern families
- Addressing Concerns – allergies/medical, abuse, procedures and planning
- Volunteers – background checks, training, agreements, policies
- Visitors and Holidays – welcoming visitors, holiday and event safety
- Communication with Families – opportunities and technology
- Resources – abuse prevention, background checks, children’s ministry websites and blogs
The ‘Technology Spotlight: Children’s Check-In’ ebook was designed to provide those in children’s ministry both with pertinent suggestions, as well as important general information, that they can quickly and easily put into practice to improve child safety, better understand available technology, and help positively impact the families they serve,” said Alex Smith, KidCheck CEO.
Smith continued, “It’s important to us to be able to share the knowledge and experience we’ve acquired over the years from serving churches of all sizes. We are thrilled to be able to combine that knowledge with the church technology expertise of such a cutting edge website as ChurchTechToday to deliver this insightful free ebook.”
The topic of children’s security is critical—especially given the myriad of issues that many families currently face—from allergies, to social media, to restraining orders,” commented Lauren Hunter, founder and editor of ChurchTechToday.com. “Our aim in writing the ebook was to provide churches with practical information and solutions to common security issues and concerns that children’s ministry staff must consider to keep the children they serve safe in today’s Church.”
In other recent news, KidCheck offers “Improving Child Safety in Your Organization” webinar.
KidCheck, Inc. provides secure, web based children’s check-in software and complete check-in station solutions for churches, fitness facilities, and organizations caring for children. KidCheck is committed to delivering easy-to-use, reliable and secure check-in systems backed by expert, personal service and support. To learn more or to sign up for a demo visit http://www.kidcheck.com.
ChurchTechToday is the #1 church technology website for pastors, communicators, and leaders. With the goal to provide insight into a variety of topics including social media, websites, worship, media, mobile, and software, ChurchTechToday aims to shed light on how church technology can empower and position churches for impact and growth.
To download the free ebook, visit http://vid.us/sna95q.
PR is changing. Always has, always will. Sometimes it’s frustrating for us PR folk to try and keep up with all the changes. Used to be that massive change would only occur every few years, but since social media entered the picture, it seems that vast change is required on a near monthly basis.
One of the blogs I follow, WeBlogBetter, had a recent article entitled: 5 SEO Tactics That Worked in 2012 but you Must Avoid in 2013.
In this article, Kiesha notes her second point, which relates directly to the PR industry:
2. Goodbye positive PRs, hello honest to goodness reviews.
If there’s one thing that was abused in SEO last year, that would be the overhyped positive press releases brands published in different sites just to give a good name to their business. While they weren’t under keyword fluff, Google also saw that not all these positive write-ups proved true to their word, and were just published to spread their brand.
Nowadays, it’s no longer safe to send out PRs to just about every press release site available online; it should rather take in the form of honest reviews. They should not only tackle the good, but also see the bad side of things, as this will increase the quality of information your target audiences will use.
In the world of blogging, especially in church technology, the industry in which I focus on with my PR business and blogging, most of the blogs out there are “pay for play.” This means that if you want your product or service reviewed, you’ll need to pay the blogger a sponsored post fee. These fees are usually quite small – anywhere from $50-200 per post, so it’s usually worth it for the company to get a few reviews on niche sites in their industry.
But where does this leave press releases? I’ve noticed a decline in church tech companies sending out press releases in general. Perhaps with social media taking over and resources being allocated to this aspect of the marketing department, PR has taken a back seat (we’ve always been the red-headed step-child, but that’s another blog post).
How do you think PR is affected by SEO? What are some of the changes you see in your industry?
If you’re like most companies or consultants, writing blog posts for your company blog are about last on your list (if you’re anything like me). I was recently of this fact by my fabulous press release wire service, eReleases.com, who periodically sends out emails with great content focused on PR and marketing. I’ve summarized these five tips below from Mickie Kennedy’s email, “Make Your Blog a ‘Must Read'” from the company’s bang-up blog, PR Fuel.
5 Tips to Make Your Corporate Blog Content Matter:
1) Your blog must be more that a promotional tool for your company.
2) Even as budgets nosedive, don’t cut your budget to have original content written.
3) Entertaining and informative posts are your best bet for enticing readers to come back.
4) Your content doesn’t always have to be safe. It’s okay to comment on industry events and news as it relates to your industry.
5) Network with other bloggers in your industry and develop relationships that will stretch your company and your blog.
From one of my PR heros, Joan Stewart:
This is the time to start collecting editorial calendars so you can begin creating your media plan for next year.
Contact the advertising department at each newspaper and magazine where you want publicity and ask a sales rep to send you a calendar or lead you to it at their website.
Editorial calendars list special sections and other topical features being planned for specific publications. They tip you off to sections where your story would be a good fit. Find out who edits the section, write a pitch, and then deliver it. Using editorial calendars will put you miles ahead of everyone else who’s pitching.
Here are three more tips for creating a media plan:
–Less is more. You’re better off targeting fewer media outlets and writing customized pitches for each, rather than delivering the same one-size-fits-all pitch to dozens of media outlets, many of which will have very different audiences.
–Use the social media sites to find journalists who cover your topic. If you find a beat reporter on, say, Twitter, follow him. Pay attention to topics he’s writing about. Retweet his content. Start the conversation. And then pitch.
–Think of ways to repurpose your publicity, using multi-media. If a local newspaper prints a story about your company’s new product, don’t stop there. Create a video for YouTube. Post photos to Flickr. Feature the product on Company Pages on LinkedIn. Consider hosting a free webinar showing people how to use the product, and offer replays of the video at your blog.
If you aren’t creating a strategy right now to generate publicity in the next 12 months, in another month or two, it may be too late. Long lead times for some media outlets, like national magazines for instance, mean you need to be pitching stories six months before the magazine goes to press.
But you don’t have to start creating a plan from scratch. Let me help.
“How to Create a Media Plan” is a graduate-level course on how to get worldwide attention for your product, service, cause or issue, by creating and following a well-thought-out, month-by-month strategic plan that also leaves room for publicity ideas when there’s breaking news.
It’s available as electronic transcripts, CDs or MP3s. Read more about how it will shorten your learning curve.
ROAR, developer of mobile apps for churches, has been selected by LifeWay Christian Resources of the Southern Baptist Convention to become the recommended church app developer for churches and ministries seeking to develop their own custom church app. With nine in 10 smartphone owners using their phones to access the internet or email (Pew Research), many churches are looking to partner with a trusted church app developer to make use of this widely-used communication tool. LifeWay recommends ROAR as a reliable and trustworthy church technology partner.
“We’ve worked with hundreds churches across the nation on their mobile websites, mobile web app, custom church apps, and social media strategy,” comments Matt McKee, owner of ROAR. “We are excited that LifeWay has chosen to recommend our firm as their primary church app developer.”
In a recent report on smartphone adoption by the Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project, the research firm finds that two in five cell owners own a smartphone. As smartphone adoption rates continue to increase, churches can’t deny that communicating via a church app provides many possibilities for connecting with people on-the-go.
“LifeWay carefully and deliberately recommends select solutions to the thousands of churches we serve, and are proud to now include ROAR on our list of providers for Digital Church solutions,” says Matt Morris, project manager for LifeWays Digital Church. “ROAR will help us expand into the church market even further by allowing churches the opportunity to have their own uniquely branded app that their congregations can utilize.”
LifeWay already has significant market share in the church app market and currently offers over 30 different apps.
Launched in January 2010, ROAR has quickly become one of the top app development firms for churches, schools, and ministries. ROAR supports app development for every type of mobile device and offers customers custom branding, audio streaming, event calendars, blog/news readers, streaming video and social media integration, at realistic prices. ROAR is the official mobile app developer for Group Publishing, Simple Youth Ministry, and ORANGE, and recently purchased MobileSalt to increase its market share in the church app development market.
About LifeWay Digital Church
LifeWay’s Digital Church is a collection of web-based resources and services that assists churches in efficiently and effectively managing growth within their church, congregation and community. By conducting the due-diligence for the church, Digital Church endorses select, top-tier solutions in the cloud that help both churches and ministries reach people for Christ. Services offered by Digital Church include church management software, eGiving, mobile app development, worship planning, website development, background checks, and more.