Watch Overview

The 2-Part Church Announcements Formula

Today you’re going to learn The 2-Part Church Announcements Formula.

Follow this formula and you’ll see your congregation pay more attention during your announcements.

Even better…this formula will lead to more next steps taking place in your church each week.

I’ve personally presented more than 30,000 church announcements over the last five years – and this formula encapsulates everything I’ve learned in that time.

The best part?

This formula works in any church, in any context.

How can I be so sure?

Simply put, this announcement formula uses the most powerful form of human communication as its foundation: storytelling.

Storytelling is the single most powerful form of human communication. And I know that’s a pretty big claim, so let me offer you some proof to back it up.

Let’s start with Jesus…

In Robert Stein’s book The Method and Message of Jesus’ Teachings, Stein takes inventory of all of Jesus’ teachings throughout the synoptic Gospels and finds that no less than 35% of the time Jesus was teaching, he was using story.

No less than 35% of the time Jesus was teaching he was using story

Jesus understood the secret of storytelling that we now understand thanks to brain science.

What is that secret?

Storytelling is the only type of communication that actually forces our brains to focus and pay attention.1

Why is this important?

Attention is a scarce resource. Up to a third of our waking hours are spent in a daydreaming state.2 Storytelling is unique because it’s the only type of communication that can snap us out of this daydreaming state and force our brains to focus.

The Church Announcements Formula

Here’s the bottom line:

The ultimate goal of any church announcement is to compel a person to take a next step.

You want a person to respond to your announcement and join a small group, sign up to be baptized, setup recurring giving, or register for an upcoming event.

Of course, to inspire any of these next steps you first need your church’s attention.

And the absolute best way to capture that attention using both the example of Jesus and our current understanding of how the human brain functions is to use storytelling.

Ready for the formula? Here it is:

The 2-Part Church Announcements Formula: 
One Story + One Next Step

Crazy simple.

Part #1: One Story

The first step in The 2-Part Church Announcements Formula is: one story.

How does this actually work? Below you’ll find a pair of examples.

In the first example, I’m sharing an announcement at my church for baptisms. My church had a baptism service coming up and we wanted as many people as possible to participate.

So we did an announcement for it.

But, rather than spend the bulk of my announcement time talking about the date, time, and requirements for baptism, I simply told the story of when I was baptized.

Click the video below to see how I did it:

The first step in The 2-Part Church Announcements Formula hinges on a simple principle: information vs. inspiration.

Remember, the goal of a church announcement is to inspire action – to compel a person in your church to take a next step.

And when it comes to next steps, inspiration is a far better motivator than information.

With that being said, I want to show you another example of how to use story in your church announcements.

In the first example, you saw me, alone on stage, telling a personal story about my own baptism experience. But what if you don’t want to tell a personal story?

Simply put, share the story of another person in your church!

When it comes to next steps, inspiration is a far better motivator than information

In this second example, my church wanted to recruit more volunteers for kids ministry – a universal struggle for many churches. We decided to do an announcement for it.

But again, rather than spout off a bunch of boring information from stage that would have compelled very few people (if any) to take a next step and volunteer, I hosted a live mini-interview with a pair of real volunteers from our kids ministry to hear their story.

Click the video below to see how I did it:

Now, at this point you might be thinking, “Brady, I don’t know if my church can do this – we have way too many church announcements!”

You may be right.

Here’s the bottom line: my church only shares 1-3 announcements in service each week.

That’s right.

Despite being a larger church with dozens of events and ministries happening all the time, we purposefully limit the number of announcements we share from stage on a Sunday.

Why do we do this?

Here’s the deal: we recognize that attention is the most valuable commodity our church can possess – but that commodity is finite – and we don’t want to waste it.

The 50% Rule For Church Announcements

Here’s the good news:

In my experience, there’s an easy way to limit the number of weekly announcements your church shares in service. I call it: The 50% Rule.

The 50% Rule is simple:

If an announcement does not apply to 50%+ of the people in attendance on a Sunday morning, it doesn't warrant a stage announcement.

Ignore The 50% Rule at your own peril.

Because consider this…

If each week you share multiple announcements in service that don’t apply to the majority of your congregation, you’re conditioning your church to ignore your promotions simply because most of them don’t apply to the bulk of the people listening.

To make a point:

If you wish to maximize the impact of The 2-Part Church Announcements Formula, limit the number of Sunday announcements you have each week.

Part #2: One Next Step

To truly see The 2-Part Church Announcements Formula succeed, you need to master the second step.

Very few churches execute this second step well, but it truly does make all the difference.

Don’t forget, the entire goal of church announcements is to inspire your congregation to take a next step.

Think about it this way:

Every church mission/vision statement can be distilled down to two things: the great commission and/or the greatest commandments.

At its core, everything you and I do within our churches is to help people: love God, love others, and make disciples.

That’s what we do.

Every church has the same goal…help people to: love God, love others, and make disciples

Now, look carefully…

Because what I need you to notice about each of these three statements (love God, love others, and make disciples) is that each begins with a verb: love, love, and make.

And to go back to third grade English class, a verb is an action word. You can’t love God passively, you can’t love others passively, and you definitely cannot make disciples passively – each of these objectives requires action.

And I don’t know about you, but I don’t want a passive church full of spectators. I want an action-taking church full of active participants that are taking next steps.

Fair enough?

This is why the second step of The 2-Part Church Announcements Formula is so important. Heck, this step in the formula is everything!

Sure, you may be able to tell a great story, you may be able to inspire your congregation, you may even grab their attention! But if you can’t then parlay that attention into an actual next step – if you can’t compel them to take action…then your announcement has failed to reach its goal.

Want to know the best part though?

I want to share with you the exact word-for-word script that I use at the end of each of my announcements.

This is the precise script I use for step two of The 2-Part Church Announcements Formula when I want a church to take their next step.

Here’s the script:

"Head to lifeabundant.info or visit the lifeabundant.info kiosk in the lobby."

Now:

What makes this particular script so powerful?

Beacuse this is the only next step script I ever use.

  • I never ask people to talk to Pastor Carl
  • I never tell people to call the church office
  • I never ask people to check the bulletin
  • I never ask people to download an app
  • I never ask people to email the ministry leader

Sadly, most churches sabotage their own announcements every week with chaotic communications.

What do I mean by that?

I mean that, instead of offering their church one next step, most churches will complicate things by offering multiple next steps. They’ll then further complicate things by using different next steps for different announcements.

Here are a couple of examples: check the bulletin, call the church, talk to the pastor, use the paper signups, email a ministry leader, download the app, among others.

This is confusing!

Church announcements next steps

To compel your church to take more next steps, offer one next step only – not multiple.

It gets better though…because let’s pause for a moment and take a closer look at the script I shared with you.

To refresh your memory, here it is again:

"Head to lifeabundant.info or visit the lifeabundant.info kiosk in the lobby."

The first thing I want you to notice is that we’re using a website for our single next step: lifeabundant.info

And the reason we use a website for our next step destination is that we want our church to be able to to take next steps 24/7.

I want my church to be able to join a small group on a Sunday after service, of course, but I also want them to do that same thing in their break room at work on a Tuesday afternoon.

SIDE NOTE: If you’re curious, the lifeabundant.info website was built using Nucleus. Nucleus is a new kind of church website builder because it revolves around this single idea: next steps. We call this type of website a central hub – one destination for every single next step.

How To Overcome The Technology Hurdle

Now:

There’s one final part of this next step script that we haven’t talked about.

One more time, the script goes like this:

"Head to lifeabundant.info or visit the lifeabundant.info kiosk in the lobby."

Now imagine this:

Using a Nucleus website like lifeabundant.info, you could have people in church signing up to be baptized on their phones in the middle of service!

This is powerful stuff!

On the other hand, what about the people in your church that are less familiar with technology? Maybe they’re a bit older and you don’t want them to feel left out.

That’s where the lifeabundant.info kiosk comes into play.

Church announcements kiosk

Using tablets setup in your lobby, you can configure an actual next steps kiosk using the exact same central hub website – in our case, that’s lifeabundant.info so we created the lifeabundant.info kiosk.

Pro Tip: Have a volunteer stand near your next steps kiosk to offer a helping hand and to aid anyone unfamiliar with your new central hub website

Why is this so powerful?

By doing this, you’re able to capture more next steps from people of all ages, while still ensuring that every next step is happening through the same central hub website [Example: lifeabundant.info].

Church Announcements Success Stories

Ready to start using The 2-Part Church Announcements Formula? Get inspired by reading these success stories from real churches using this simple strategy:

"We're a church of all ages. Our first "online only" registration was for our end of summer baptism & picnic. We had an overwhelming response! More registrations than we have ever received vs. the old "see Patti at the table after the service" method. We now use it exclusively for all registrations including youth ministry retreats where there are many forms and payments that need to be made besides every other aspect of communication needed for our church.” - Patti Dowling
"Tonight we hosted a small group at church - mostly older folks. Today was also the first day our Nucleus kiosk was setup. A 75+ year old lady who's only ever used a flip phone came up to it and said: “What's this?" I explained a little and within 10 seconds I stood there as she chose the prayer request card and submitted a request for prayer. She needed very minimal help AND SHE HAD NEVER EVEN USED A TABLET OR SMARTPHONE BEFORE." - Adam Diehl
"Nucleus has been a huge win for us at our church. Sign up rates for groups, special events, and trips are up. Everything goes through Nucleus. Having one consistent next step for everything in our church has probably been the best and most impactful aspect of Nucleus.” - Tom Kay