08 Oct 8 Reasons Your Church Needs Sermon Transcription
Church Growth Opportunity
It’s no secret that church growth is in decline these days. Churches that are growing do not take it for granted, and those that aren’t growing are reevaluating exactly what’s slowing them down. This cultural shift that we’re experiencing goes hand-in-hand with the technology that surrounds us now. While businesses around the area head to the internet to promote their ideas and content, many churches have yet to take steps to do so with their message. An audio or video podcast is a great step, but you need text (lots and lots of text) to be found on Google. A sermon transcription is a no-brainer when you start to consider stepping into this realm. One sermon transcription can be anywhere from 8,000 to 10,000 words. Four sermon transcriptions a month is about 40,000 words. Are you working on a two-month series? That’s 80,000 words, which is the average length of a fiction book. You see where I’m going with this. There is so much untapped potential that businesses all over would love to have. A church is uniquely positioned to take advantage of the content they’re producing with sermon transcription.
Pastors spend hours and hours per week, or sometimes prep for months in advance for a sermon or sermon series. Sunday comes, the message is delivered with extreme skill and tact, and now it’s Monday. The team uploads the content to the site and it’s lost forever. “Lost forever? It’s posted on the site,” you may say. True. And any regular site visitor may find it and give it a listen. You may have a pretty good audience for your podcast. But the fact is that in order for someone who’s never been to your church to find that piece of content, they’d have to type the title of the sermon. Why? Because that’s all that’s posted on the site. In contrast, if you post the sermon transcription underneath the audio or video podcast each week, not only would someone be able to find it with the title, but they could find it through the numerous topics you discussed throughout. “The resurrection of Lazarus” may not be the point of the sermon, but perhaps you touched on it briefly. Any curious “googler” could be directed to your site via that sermon transcription. Imagine the absolute goldmine of content you’re currently sitting on. Sermon transcription is a surefire way to start building that internet marketing snowball.
Search Engine Optimization
Jeremiah Smith, CEO of SimpleTiger, a boutique digital marketing agency, points out that one of his go-to strategies for search engine optimization (SEO) is to take a video and turn that one piece of content into ten different pieces. For example, we can take your video, pull poignant quotes from the sermon, artistically place it over either a picture of you speaking or another photo, and post that on Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest and your blog. Then we take the audio from the video, post it on SoundCloud and embed that on your site. Then, perhaps, we tweet out quotes from the sermon with links pointing back to the blog. And then, if you host it on Vimeo, why stop there? We’ll put it on YouTube, too.
“Now that one, single piece of content has grown ten legs and is all over the place and has links pointing back to it from social networks and is shared on platforms that already have audiences.” -Jeremiah Smith
One of the most exciting uses I’ve seen from one of our clients was when they equipped their prison ministry with the weekly transcripts to provide to prisoners. I was blown away. It seemed so obvious! Now this church is able to build a relationship with those who’ve been incarcerated, aid in the rehabilitation process, and perhaps gain a member upon their release.
In another instance, sermon transcripts were sent with a team to a hurricane-stricken area that was without power to provide a word of hope in the midst of total devastation.
Bible Study Resources
Our Bible study teachers spend hours preparing for Sunday morning. Oftentimes they use notes, articles or bulletins to assist them in their studies. Another great use for sermon transcription is a literal word-for-word account of what that pastor said on Sunday morning. We can use that to refer to when preparing a lecture, discussing a specific point or recalling an exact quote that someone found particularly heavy-hitting or thought provoking.
Sermon transcripts are a fantastic foundation for a great church content marketing package, but why stop there? There are so many ways to make that content work for you, and we’re here to help. Many enjoy the quality work we provide on sermon transcripts, but with our content marketing package we’ll help you achieve that next step. While we work on your sermon, we’ll take numerous quotes from each sermon and send them back to your team, designed and ready for social media. Your transcripts will get the full treatment of formatting, including bold scripture, red letter, italics when the speaker uses emphasis, and links to valuable resources you want your visitors to have quick and easy access to. We also offer no-middle-man transcription upload on supported platforms such as WordPress or SquareSpace. Our aim is to make this fundamental, time-consuming aspect of SEO something your team doesn’t have to worry about whatsoever.
Specialization vs. Mediocrity
While it’s tempting to use a cheaper option, many folks don’t understand exactly how these word-mills operate. Sermons are often chopped up into five different chunks and delegated to different individuals with different skill sets. The end result is not pretty. People find that they spend more time editing the text they receive than they would have if they just typed it themselves. Where are the savings in that? We never break up audio. We want our scribes to have a full understanding of what’s being discussed from top to bottom. Sometimes context clues are the difference between an accurate and inaccurate transcription. We also verify every scripture, quote or other reference for accuracy. It’s easy for a pastor to glance down at his notes and say 1 John 1:5 when he meant John 1:5. At ChurchScript, we iron out all the kinks to ensure complete accuracy.
A Chance to Help Our Community
Shortly before I started ChurchScript, I spent some time working at a transcription company in town that… well, let’s just say the working conditions were a bit dreary. We could set our own schedules, but the room was lifeless, we were always on camera (something about non-disclosure agreements?) and if we stopped typing for a second, we were pulled aside and questioned. Breaks were limited, the audio was boring, and no one was happy. I couldn’t imagine spending much time there, and I felt sad for those whose only option was to stay. It became my dream to provide part-time or even full-time jobs to individuals who are in need based on their circumstances. Remote working has become extremely feasible for companies in today’s day and age, and I wanted to change lives with that power. Whether it’s a stay-at-home mom or a college student looking for an extra buck, I want to give them the freedom to put their skills and expertise to use in a way that makes sense for their lives. When you use ChurchScript for your church marketing, sermon transcription or both, you can rest assured that our laborers choose where they want to work and when they want to work. It will always be on on time, high quality, and a true labor of love.