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We're All Connected
More than a third of American adults are now on social networking web sites reports the Pew Foundation. More than three out of four of these people sign-on at least once a week, 37 percent each day and another 23 percent every few days. The Annenberg Center reports that 52 percent of Americans say the Internet is important to their relationships. A newsletter for market research professionals has published key findings from seven new research projects on this topic in its July 3 edition. Marketing professionals and media companies are falling all over themselves trying to figure out how to relate to this massive media consumption shift which is largely generational. 

Almost all 18-to-24-year-olds who have access to the web (99 percent) are registered on at least one of the social networking sites. Less than a quarter of these are on Twitter. (Harris Poll says that it is about one in ten.) In fact, only 5 percent of American adults are registered on Twitter and just 3 percent actually upload information and half of these do so only four or five times a year. Among business executives, 75 percent use LinkedIn, 22 percent Facebook and only 18 percent Twitter. Yet Twitter is growing rapidly. In one recent month it doubled the number of users. One study shows that Twitter users use it primarily to keep in touch with friends (85 percent), while less than a third use it to maintain contact with business or professional contacts. What motivates people to use Twitter? The largest number say it is because they "find it exciting to learn new things from people" and "value getting information in a timely manner." Smaller numbers use it to generate business contacts or simply like to be connected to a community. 
So how about you, pastor? Are you using one or more of these ways to keep in touch with your parishioners? If you want to learn from some effective peers of your, watch how these pastors connect with their congregations and beyond: Joey Pollom, Ron & Buffy Halvorsen, Bobby McGhee, Tim Mitchell, Greg Nelson, Mike Tucker, Mar de Oliveria, Geoff Blake, Delwin Finch, Matthew Gamble, Ann Roda, Buell Fogg, Ryan Bell & Dany Hernandez, just to name a few.

INNOVATIONewsletter - July 23, 2009