Last week we ran into Youth Minister Katie Szarkowski at Life Teen’s Steubenville Atlanta youth conference. Katie told us about the surprising success she’s had promoting her Life Teen program on her local Catholic radio station. We asked her to write an article to share her story. Be inspired!
I’m sure like every other youth minister on the planet; I always have three things on my mind
- How can I love God more?
- How can I love teens more?
- How do I get my teens to love God more?
I realized a few weeks ago that bulletin announcements and inserts, Facebook events, and text messages were just not cutting it anymore. I already use the Simply Youth Ministry texting service, and I feel like I live on my Facebook, but as we started preparing for “Give It Away Now” I wanted a new way to get the word out.
Our goal, for our small parish is 10,000 cans of food. I know it sounds crazy, but I decided to look past my normal marketing venues and to take a new step. My new step was toward radio. I’m sure like many other cities, we have a Catholic radio station, and our little station is always begging people to come in. Now I know my teens are not listening to Queen of Peace Radio, but their parents and grandparents are!
After spending 2 hours with the director of the station, I have public service announcements out for Give It Away Now, our upcoming Joyful Noise Fall Retreat, and a general announcement welcoming people to our Life Teen Program. My announcements have been running for about two weeks, and I have had more feedback and interest in our program generated by these “commercials” than any bulletin insert I have ever done. I have been invited by the director of the station to come and do monthly invitations to events, and even have my own live radio show. Now I just need suggestions for my new radio persona!
New marketing opportunities pop up all the time. Think outside the realm of inserts and text messages. My next step is a TV commercial. What will your next step be?