With Christmas just ten weeks away, it’s time to start promoting your event for this festive season. This year, the national Church’s Christmas campaign is on the theme Follow the star: The Great Invitation. So dust off the star from your Christmas decorations box and prepare to share an invitation with your community that they won’t want to refuse.
To get yourself started, you might want to take a look at the Church of England’s digital planner which you can download here.
After this, it’s full steam ahead to the big day. We’ve put together a list to help you keep on track when inviting your community to celebrate with you this year. You might want to save this page so you can come back to it or follow us on social media where we’ll be posting weekly reminders.
8 weeks to go
November marks eight weeks until the big day, meaning it’s officially time to talk about Christmas.
Now’s the time to make sure that your event is listed on AChurchNearYou.com, remembering to use the tag ‘Christmas’. Make sure you also add the event to your website if you have one.
7 weeks to go
Let’s start sharing the upcoming event on social media. Grab some images or videos from previous years (checking that you have permission to share them) and accompany them with a link to this year’s event.
6 weeks left
It’s time to share links to your event in your local community Facebook groups/pages, letting everyone know they’re welcome.
You could also do this again the week before as a last-minute reminder.
5 weeks and counting
Head to the Resource Hub on AChurchNearYou.com and use the easy graphic or video generator to make an event promo, and post this to your social media with some invitational text.
1 month to go
December is here. Make sure someone’s around to capture the church building being decorated for Christmas and share it on social media.
If you’re feeling adventurous, why not set your phone to record a time-lapse (sped-up video) of the tree being put up so people can enjoy the process from start to finish?
3 weeks left
It’s time for a festive Facebook poll.
Ask a question such as: ‘We’ll be serving mulled wine and mince pies at our event, which do you prefer?’, or ‘What’s your favourite part of Christmas dinner?’
Not every post needs to be linked back to the event, it’s important to also have some fun, more light-hearted content for our communities to get involved in.
Just 2 weeks to go
Another easy week, simply retweet, repost or reshare Christmas content from our social media accounts or the Church of England’s.
Why not add your own take with a local angle. For example, if you share a post with the national Christmas advert, repost it with a comment such as, ‘Come and celebrate Christmas in [Gloucester]!’ and then your event details.
1 week left
Let’s get personal. Record and share on social media a 30-second ‘behind the scenes’ video on your smartphone. Show the preparations or rehearsals, or the vicar saying you’re invited to come along. You could share this in your Facebook stories or just to your local page.
1 day before
We don’t want to miss any last-minute interest so try sharing images on social media, showing the church is ready to welcome visitors.
1 hour before
It’s nearly time… Film a live video saying what’s coming up, that there’s an hour to go and everyone is welcome.
At the event
Take pictures during the event or service (with permission). Make sure you snap lots of shots and some video as this can be used in many ways, and you’ll likely have to delete lots that include people yawning, sneezing or just generally not being photo-ready!
1 day after
And there we have it! Another year, another successful Christmas service. Share some of the best pictures from the event and include a thank you message to anyone who was involved in putting the event on.
1 week after
How’s it a week after already?! Post some of the quotes or recordings taken from people at the event.
We hope this will encourage others to attend future events even if they couldn’t make this one.