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Sunday, September 16, 2007

Imagine your own UUA marketing campaign.

Never mind that we haven't even seen the UUA's just-announced national marketing campaign materials. My doughty readers are already rethinking and second-guessing the campaign. So, dear readers, if you were running the show, what would you do? To keep things focused, let's assume that a print-plus-online ad campaign in a single magazine is a good way to go. (The UUA is launching its campaign in Time and in October.) Which magazine would you choose and why?

Copyright © 2007 by Philocrites | Posted 16 September 2007 at 4:39 PM

Previous: UUA announces national marketing campaign.
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September 16, 2007 06:16 PM | Permalink for this comment

Well, I don't really intend to play (since that would be oh so inappropriate, considering my employer). So instead, I will note that last night on the SciFi channel during Doctor Who there were very nice ads from the Methodist Church.


September 16, 2007 06:37 PM | Permalink for this comment

Scott Wells noticed the United Methodists' SciFi Channel ad, too.

The SciFi Channel ad is part of the United Methodist Church's $25 million, 4-year TV campaign. (I can't find a public statement yet about how much the UUA expects to spend on its national ad campaign — I'll work on that — but it will come nowhere close. This fall's "Association Sunday," which is focused on "growth in numbers," is aiming to raise $1 million, not all of which will go toward marketing initiatives.) Here's a recent United Methodist Church press release about the success of their marketing efforts. And here's an announcement of their new online ad campaign.

David Smith:

September 16, 2007 07:07 PM | Permalink for this comment

As part of the campaign I'd require that every participating congregation implement a connection ministry and subscription to the Connection Power PowerVisitor and PowerMember modules ( Or equivalent.

Improving our member retention capacity will provide a much greater ROI than streaming many more new visitors through the front door, only to watch them stream out the back over the next seven to fifteen months.


September 17, 2007 07:36 AM | Permalink for this comment

I agree that the bigger problem are the people who visit and then leave a year or two later.


September 17, 2007 02:44 PM | Permalink for this comment

I often feel that the UUA sees itself as selling liberalism to people who already believe in church. However, in my environment, most people are liberals who never set foot in a church. So maybe one could try selling church to people who are already liberal. An ad in, say, the Utne Reader could say:

Commune life burn you out?
Sierra Club mailshots too impersonal?
Try church!
UUs: Buliding the Blessed Community with six days off each week!

Kim Hampton:

September 17, 2007 04:19 PM | Permalink for this comment

Utne is exactly where the UUA should NOT place an ad. Nobody who knows about Uism/Uism/UUism will be surprised if they hear about an UUA ad in Utne.

Evangelism is supposed to be about taking the good news to those who have not heard of you before. So I would suggest that the UUA go to places that are not considered liberal (or conservative, for that matter).

Maxim....GQ....Ladies Home Journal.....Cosmo...or any of the other "lifestyle" mags. Any of those would be good and get you a second look. (and maybe a little buzz)


September 17, 2007 08:48 PM | Permalink for this comment

The obvious suggestion: go for the New York Times. If the UUA could afford it. But full page, A section, stand-by status (i.e., you don't get to pick which day), for a non-profit supposedly costs a mere $65K. Hey, it works for And hey, someone who drops five bucks on the Sunday Times might just drop five bucks in the collection plate at church. Oh, was that too crass? What's that? --we're no longer trying for that upper middle class college-educated demographic? Oh.


September 18, 2007 10:48 AM | Permalink for this comment

Who claims the UUA isn't still aiming at an upper-middle-class college-educated demographic?


September 18, 2007 11:35 AM | Permalink for this comment

It may be cheesy, but I LOVED the Methodist church ad from a couple of years ago with the lady going around town leaving big gift-wrapped packages then coming back home to find one on her own doorstep. (Voiceover was something about the Methodish church helping you give your gifts to the world.)

It was awesome.

I would also vote for PBS, Sci-fi channel etc, other channels smart people watch. I've been kicking around an idea that I don't have fully formed yet. Will sitck it up on the Chaliceblog when it is ready for public consumption.

who watches lots of CSI reruns and the occaisional episode of Judge Judy, but isn't sure those are the best marketing venues for UUism in general.


September 18, 2007 10:23 PM | Permalink for this comment

I think TV advertising is a huge waste of money, personally -- most cable providers offer reasonable access to DVRs these days, and I'm sure I'm not alone in not having watched any television in real time in more than a year.


September 19, 2007 02:16 AM | Permalink for this comment

I think it would be much more cost effective and real to have a regular radio or TV program that shows us more deeply, rather than any ad. A few seconds isn't good for us -- we aren't really sound bite material.

Kim Hampton:

September 19, 2007 07:31 PM | Permalink for this comment

Surely though.......if the UMC can come up with "Open Hearts,Open Minds, Open Doors...the people of the United Methodist Church"......the UUA could come up with something as catchy as that. It's not as if those commercials say anything about their theology.

On a different but similar point....if every non-denominational megachurch can have commercials, why can't we? And can we have them some other place besides NPR and PBS? Some of us have tastes besides those.


September 20, 2007 10:11 AM | Permalink for this comment

To be fair, I don't think the Methodists are sound bite material either.

I can't imagine a UUism themed TV show that even I would watch. (Exception: I would be all over a show about a UU minister who solves murders and I'm actually making very slow progress on a novel about same.)

Still, Jess makes a fair point about how lots of our demographic has DVRs.



September 22, 2007 08:08 AM | Permalink for this comment

Drew Tripp complains that the UUA and Bay Area marketing campaigns are still stuck with a negative message.

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