YouTube is known as the most popular platform for Generation Z (children born between 1996 and 2010). Ad Week recently reported that 95% of these young people use YouTube. Young people turn to the platform for entertainment, recommendations on products, and even research for school. Many articles, like this one from TechCrunch, report that there are 1.5 monthly users logging onto Youtube every month. While it is extremely important to create compelling video content that is relevant to millennials and Generation Z, these are not the only groups of people we can reach through these platforms.
Here are some ways we can use video to reach bridge the generation gap and create a strong church family.
- Sharing with the Shut-Ins: Recently at my church, I witnessed a beautiful example of how we can use YouTube to share our ‘on campus’ church with our members who cannot make it to church regularly. One of our Sunday school class members wanted to be able to share the great teaching with those who could not attend. She knew a video would be great. Since she didn’t know the best way to implement her plan, she asked her grandkids for help. Each week, her grandchildren record and upload the Sunday school lesson to Youtube. Class members can then watch it when they are unable to attend the class.
- Member Interviews: Video is also a great way to share the stories of your church members. Often, with large churches, people of different generations attend service at different times. This results in them staying within their own social circle, causing a disconnect as an overall church family. You may capture a Facebook Live video of the Garden Committee working on campus beautification. You could set up video interviews for youth to share their mission trip experiences. Everyone can join in on the opportunity to share the life of the church. Older and younger members on and off campuses are able to share experiences together.
- Reverse Mentoring: Even if you have videos uploaded to share with those that cannot attend church, not all church members know how to access them. Digital technology is something that younger generations feel very comfortable participating in and creating. Younger church members and they can help older members become more familiar with these programs by developing reverse mentoring opportunities. Younger students would ‘mentor’ older members, teaching them how to access and utilize technology that helps them stay connected with their church family. These face to face interactions will allow further connection and interaction between the generations, thereby strengthening the church family.
YouTube has great benefits for strengthening the church family.
As church communicators, we have the responsibility to use as many ways as we can to connect with the greatest audience. This includes the newest technologies to communicate the gospel in order to connect with our younger generations. We can also use technology to connect all church members, sharing the heritage and legacy of our churches and our faith. A church YouTube presence is a great way to establish this connection.