We're not about global connection, we're about local engagement.
1. Getting Started: Come to the Table
Step Zero: Decide to Use the Table
Talk it over with your church leadership and bring everybody to the Table.
Step One: Choose Your Champion
Who's your champion? It helps to have a single point person to run the show.
Step Two: Build Your Team
Your champion can’t do all the heavy lifting, so identify a team of people who can help.
Step Three: What's the Plan, Man?
Before you dive into the Table, you need to figure out how your church is going to use it.
Launch Plan: Pick a launch date and come up with a launch timeline.
Content Plan: Will posted content require approval? Will prayer requests sent to the church be posted online? Will all church ministries set up groups on the Table? What content will you post?
Interaction Plan: How open will sign-ups be? Will you allow interactions between adults and teens? How will you encourage discussion?
This is big. Take some time to get it right. But remember that it’s not set in stone. Be flexible. After all, you're herding cats.
Some helpful ideas while you plan:
Step Four: Set the Table
It's time to set the Table. Your Table champion can log in, set up your church and get rolling. Pull in your team as needed. Maybe they know where the salad fork goes.
Step Five: Get Leadership on Board
Now you have a team to run it, a plan to launch it and the basics set up. Time to show it off to leadership and get their full support.
- Cast the vision. It helps to emphasize two things:
- Present a timeline for roll-out.
- Confirm launch date (be flexible if necessary).
- Examples help: Show off our case studies of other churches that have launched the Table.
2. Pre-Launch: Grease the Wheels
But don’t drag it out. Get to the church-wide launch as quickly as you can.
Step OneGet the Staff on Board
The Table is designed primarily for the people in the pews, not the staff, but you still need staff support.
- Set up a group for the staff on the Table.
- Invite staff to the Table, help them set up their profiles (avoid the silent profile) and do any necessary training.
Step TwoEarly Group Launch
A good strategy to launching the Table is to get key groups using the Table before you launch to your entire church.
- Hold a group leader meeting to share the vision of the Table with them.
Make sure the Table is ready for launch.
- Make sure your plan to use the Table is sustainable and working. Now is the time to tweak your plan.
- What problems are people having? Are there ways you can address those issues before you launch?
3. Church Wide Launch: Go Big
Step One Prep for Launch
Step Two Launch Weekend
Start with a launch weekend. Use the entire weekend to make a big deal about the Table. Show the video, unveil the swag, talk it up.
- Get leadership to cast the vision and show commitment. Devote some platform time. Work the concept of community into the sermon. Here's a powerful example of casting vision for the Table.
- Focus on sign-ups. Get people to join.
- Emphasize benefits: Prayer, community, serving. Living church together after the service is over.
Step Three Post Launch
Launch Sunday is a great way to start, but you won’t catch the Sunday skippers or the sermon sleepers. Keep the effort going.
- Put reminders in your standard communication channels: Bulletin, newsletter, Facebook & Twitter, PowerPoint slides, etc.
- Continue to offer help on Sunday mornings: A help desk, a picture taking station, etc.
- Mention the Table from the platform every week — it can be shorter, but keep up the reminders.
4. Keep the Ball Rolling
It’s easy to coast and then you soon have nothing but crickets at your Table.
Remember the Basics
Remember these 5 c's to have a good launch:Cast Vision: You have to tell people why the Table is important.
Core Audience: Remember that the Table is built for the people in the pews.
Critical Mass: You need to hit that tipping point when enough people in your church are using the Table to make it worthwhile.
Custom Content: Post unique material to the Table as a carrot to get people there.
Call Attention: Trumpet your success and keep beating the drum to get people on the Table.
Now you just need to continue the conversation:
You’re well on your way to living church together with the Table.
Slay anonymity. Champion prayer. Squash apathy.