Monday, November 04, 2013


Ralphie and the Decoder Ring

Church Marketing Sucks writes all about branding your church design:
I’m grateful I get to be a part of the process for these churches in the area of design. I’m blessed by the conversations we have with these pastors and volunteers on how effective communication pieces (and everything is a communication piece) helps them reach their congregations and communities. Through those conversations, we end up exploring and creating in areas of branding and identity, sermon branding, and promotions and advertising.
I don't know, for some reason when I read this whole post this scene from the classic "A Christmas Story" came to mind -

Way too many time it seems like the brand gets promoted over the product. That's what happened to Ralphie here. It got stuck in a never ending promotional loop. He wanted product - that is to say he wanted the decoder ring to lead to something other than just more Ovaltine. I cannot help but contemplate how often church is like that - we make grandiose promises of what we will deliver and all we deliver is a different means of promoting the brand.

All the talk you hear these days about wanting authenticity and genuineness - I cannot help but wonder if much of that desire is rooted in this phenomena - churches promoting the brand, when they should be selling product. We create puffery when we hold in our hands the most solid and valuable product in the world.

Branding is a concept used in marketing to create the impression of added-value, when often the product is indistinct from so many other product. Why do we need to create the impression of added value? Why is our message viewed as one of many of equal value? Do we even really believe in its value?

I do not think the use of technique can make up for the fact that we do not understand the value of what it is we sell. If we did, we would not need the technique.


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