If you have been under a rock in Australia you may of missed the ACL’s (Australian Christian Lobby) leader Jim Wallace tweet on Anzac day.

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I'm so excited, in just over a week's time I'll be leaving on a jet plane to fly to LA and to Cultivate 11. It is a 16 hour flight but it will be worth it!

If you are in church communications this is THE conference to get to. It has a line up of great speakers but even better there are break outs where church communications peeps can get together and talk about what is going on in their world.

If you are creative, strategic, and responsible for influencing how your organization communicates, there is a chair waiting for you.

Of course the cherry on top of the delicious cake which is Cultivate 11 is that you can get to meet me – I know, an honour ;-) If you want to book some time, I'm very open to talking over a latte. You can find out more about Cultivate11 here.

Now I would like to meet as many people in my four days in the US. Yes, only four HUGE days. I'm flying in and out so quickly because I want to get back for Mothers Day here in Australia to be with my wife.

If you are going drop me a comment below and I'd love to catch up with you while I'm there. I'm also on the look out for some accomodation near the conference and I'm happy to room with someone. Drop me a comment below if you have spare room!


The Power Of Words

Steven Fogg —  April 20, 2011 — Leave a comment

Church communicators all face this challenge – to say thing what we want to say in a way that effectively cuts through the noise and gets noticed.

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Easter 2011 is swiftly approaching. I’ve been doing an on-line review of what churches are doing both on Good Friday and Easter Sunday in their services.

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It's been a busy couple of months here at Crossway. Here is what has hit my world this week:

I'm smack bang in the middle of a identity plan review for our church. Finishing off focus groups, now into reporting phase.

Really excited about a new online pilot project due to launch just after Easter in partnership with Lee Insko and the gang at Details Communications who are doing the web/mobile work for me. Watch this space. It will be available for all churches to use ;-)

ChurchShield logo was the "Logo of the day" award winner. Nice job.

I'm coming to Cultivate11 in May – If you want to hook up drop a comment in. It's a pretty quick trip in and out of the USA so my time is VERY limited.

Watched this video called Follow from Igniter Media. If you don't have Easter in the can from a creative point of view, this would be a good addition.

Read Elevation Church's Annual Report. Really well laid out and concise.

I've been reconnecting with my design roots over the last two months. It's been fun to refuel that passion for all things design.




Videos Of The Week

Steven Fogg —  April 8, 2011 — Leave a comment

It feels like ages since I did a video of the week post. Here are some of my favourite videos from this last week.

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In case you’ve been under a rock for the last week and missed it, Bob Parsons who the boss of GoDaddy has blogged about how he shot an elephant and put a video up on his blog.

Talk about a PR disaster. It has really hurt GoDaddy’s reputation, Bob managed to do that in one shot (if you forgive the pun) You Church, your leadership needs to know that:

1. It takes a lifetime to build your reputation but only one moment to loose it

2. Your perception of how you think others see you could be a deception

Ask yourself the following questions:

  1. What can possibly go wrong? What is the worst thing that could happen in my ministry/church?
  2. Who is responsible for fixing it, or making the event/story work?
  3. What ‘plan B’ do we have in place if something goes wrong?
  4. Who is responsible for actioning that plan if its needed, and do they have every resource on standby ready to go?
  5. What policies do we have in place that would prevent this from happening. If it happens, what policies and procedures do we have in place to help bring healing/reconciliation/legal restitution or closure.

What other PR disasters have you seen lately that the church can learn from?

Related posts – How To Avoid A PR Disaster At Your Church: Part 1 Part 2 Part 3
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One of the things I’ve noticed with serving in ministry is how much everybody is so passionate for their particular cause or ministry within the church.

I’m much the same. My heart beats like crazy for us all to communicate the gospel with stunning clarity and simplicity in a world that seems to have forgotten about the greatest story ever told.

When you have so many people who are sold out with what they do inevitably comes a time when you have to deal with disappointment. In my case it is when I bare my creative soul wide open with an idea and have to deal with rejection.

Nothing hurts a creative more (for all the right or wrong reasons) than their work being rejected. We pour so much into what we do that it can be a natural by product.

So my question to you is, how do you deal with disappointment? Comment away.


The Hourly Opinion Cycle

Steven Fogg —  March 22, 2011 — 5 Comments

We’ve lived in a world that has gone from a 24 hour news cycle to an hourly news cycle that has been ravenous for content to fill specialised news channels.

I don’t know if you’ve noticed that the hourly news cycle and has been replaced with the hourly opinion cycle.

Many news outlets have subtly (and not so subtly) shifted beyond reporting the news, to broadcasting opinion pieces in the news.

This is potentially a big deal for your church. How the ‘media’ perceives your church or key spokesperson no longer will rely just on news reporting, but on opinion pieces.

The recent Rob Bell interview with Martin Bashir is a great example. Martin is clearly letting his opinions lead his questioning – which makes for a much more aggressive and combative style of interview.

While you may not have an issue yet that is 'opinion-worthy' (not news worthy). It will come.

What are you doing to train yourself to manage the media when it comes knocking? Comment below


One of the biggest issues I've observed since working in the church world is our obsession to develop mission and vision statements. Hear me right, I don't think that having a mission or vision statement is a bad thing. But often those statements don't reflect the reality of what is really going on in the church. They are just words, without much action.

To put it another way churches can place more emphasis on preaching/teaching the mission statement, rather than simply living it out. In some messages there is no practical application or spiritual direction to do something.

Some churches are telling their congregations, rather than simply leading by doing. There needs to be less talk and more action.

In marketing speak we would say that the brand positioning isn't reflected in the brand promise.

I read this great post from Harvard Business Review today which reminded me of this. Well worth a read.