Technology is always evolving, and it’s vital for parish leaders to understand how to respond to these tech trends and advancements. If you look back over the last few decades, you’ll notice how drastically the landscape has altered. Shifting tech trends are increasingly playing a more prominent role in influencing how the parish shares the Gospel with parishioners and your local community. Today, many parishes across the world are starting to leverage technology to great effect. But as everything continues to change around us, what trends should parishes focus on in 2019?
The Importance of Mobile
Mobile use has been on an upward trajectory ever since the launch of the first smartphone. It’s the channel of choice for many parishioners, especially millennials. ParishSOFT has seen parishes begin to actively use mobile technology to target individuals and grow their relationship with members. To better engage this younger generation, you must reach them where they are. And that’s on mobile.
Almost 92 percent of all millennials own a smartphone, and the vast majority are active on social media. Being present on social media sites like Twitter and Facebook opens an opportunity for parish leaders to serve an even bigger audience.
In keeping with a mobile-first strategy, parishes are also optimizing their websites for mobile devices. And with Google now changing its search engine algorithms to favor mobile-friendly sites, expect this trend to continue into 2019.
For more details on how to create a mobile-friendly website with the help of our Ministry Brands partners, contact your ParishSOFT Sales Consultant online or call 866-930-4774 x6.
Growing Use of Parish Apps
Another prevailing parish tech trend is the use of apps, both on mobile and TV. Parishes are utilizing apps for a myriad of reasons such as a source of up-to-date information on parish events and compile an archive of all past homilies. Many parish leaders are also using parish apps to offer mid-week homilies and interact with parishioners in real-time. These apps feature tools such as a prayer request wall and social media integration where parishioners can submit prayer requests and comment on social media posts respectively. This trend is only going to grow as parishioners become more tech-savvy and digitally-native.
Video Streaming is for Parishes of All Sizes
Live streaming is no longer the sole domain of megaparishes with big budgets. The year 2019 will be remembered as the year small and medium-size faith organizations joined the digital frontier with live streaming services and video-on-demand. Thanks to the rise of OTT services like Roku, parishes can now stream their events and homilies at a fraction of the cost.
Roku’s streaming potential has given parishes enormous potential to increase viewership and reach more people across the world. With the service, parishioners can view mass or see past homilies on their TV.
With a Roku channel, parishes can broadcast their Sunday mass live and enable those who cannot be physically present due to sickness, old age or personal commitments to participate. It helps keep parishioners connected to the parish and allows them to share the joy with their friends and family.
If you are yet to join the trend, you might want to consider it. Roku lists all channels publicly making it easier to attract new viewers. Content solutions such as churchstreaming.tv can help get your parish on television apps such as Roku easily and with features that will fit your parish’s needs.
Summary of the Top Tech Trends for 2019
Parishes have embraced technology, and given that the year is still young, expect to see several parish tech trends becoming more standard. Video streaming, parish apps and the shift to a mobile-first approach are just three of the major trends. There are many more ways in which faith-based organizations can leverage technology and attain new heights.
Looking for Church Management Software that incorporates all these trends?
Check out ParishSOFT Family Suite and then contact us to find out how we can partner with you to provide the software solutions your parish needs to be successful.