When I have a conversation within our organization about something that needs to be communicated, part of the conversation always includes “Why?” because whenever you communicate something, it sparks a response from the listener – sometimes audibly, sometimes internally and silently, but always a decision about how to respond.
If you tell someone there’s an event coming up, they are having an internal conversation – maybe ‘I’m not available, I’m not interested, I can’t wait, I’m coming for sure, I wonder if my friend is going…’
Recognizing that there’s always a conversation happening will help you communicate in a way that helps move the conversation forward, not a dead end. (One of the ways to stop from creating a conversation dead end is to avoid using these 4 words.)
Move the conversation forward by talking about the ‘WHY’.
- Why would someone get off their couch on a Tuesday night and come to your event?
- Why would someone get up early on a Sunday to serve on a team rather than just attend church?
- Why would someone choose to add in this new ministry into their monthly giving budget?
- Why would someone who doesn’t have a teenager sponsor a family to send their kids to camp?
Features vs. benefits:
In sales you mention the features, but sell on the benefits.
Mention the feature that a car has a 4 litre engine instead of a 5 litre engine. Talk about the benefit of saving money in rising gas costs.
Mention the feature that the TV has a front HD input, but sell the benefit that if someone brings over their playstation, you can plug it into the front of the TV, rather than trying to get the cable into the back of the TV while mounted on the wall.
So when it comes to announcements, mention the features of what you’re announcing (the who, what, where, when and how) but drive home the point with the WHY.
Here’s are some examples of focussing on the WHY:
Youth Camp – Selling the features:
We have a youth camp coming up in 6 weeks. Parents your permission slips and fees are due next Sunday. We have some families who can’t afford to send their teenager to camp, so if you’d like to sponsor them, stop by the guest services kiosk.
Youth Camp – Selling the WHY:
Remember that feeling after youth camp that you were coming back to make a difference in your school, your home, and your community? Many of us are still connected with friends we made at youth camp, and have memories of how those few days away impacted our lives, and we want to be sure all of our teens have that same experience.
Parents, stop by the guest services kiosk to complete your student’s registration. If you don’t have teenagers, we have sponsorship opportunities available for anyone who would like to impact the life of a student who otherwise may not be able to go to camp. Stop by the guest services kiosk to complete your registration or sponsorship today.
Small Groups – Selling the features:
We have small groups that meet every Tuesday night at 7pm for dessert and coffee. They’re at different homes in our city, so stop by the guest services kiosk to pick up a list of small groups meeting this week and register for your group.
Small Groups – Selling the WHY:
If you’re looking to meet some new friends at our church, or learn more about the foundations of the bible, one of the best ways to do that is by connecting with a small group. We have coffee and dessert and casual conversations every Tuesday at 7pm. These groups meet all through our city, and if you stop by the guest services kiosk, they can help you find the group closest to your home or the group that best matches your study interests so you can start or continue to build friendships with other believers.
Try transitioning your announcements, social media posts, email newsletters, and volunteer pushes to focussing on the WHY. I guarantee with a little practise that your response rate will be better than ever.
Comment below with how you’ve seen this working for you!