Our dream at Hungry Generation is to reach thousands locally and millions globally. Through our local church we are reaching out to the city. Through our media ministry and my traveling, we are reaching out to the world. As a church of Jesus we must THINK GLOBAL and ACT LOCAL. Some do the opposite, think local and act global.
Recently, our YouTube account reached a milestone of 100k subscribers. As of right now, it’s about 111k to be more exact. We are very excited for the opportunity to influence others with the word and works of God.
We are very active on the internet as a ministry. We believe that it is an effective tool to bring the message of the Lord to the world. As newspapers, the radio and television used to be, the internet or social media is todays most effective tool.
Here is a little recap of how we started. Our YouTube channel was created 12 years ago, on November 27th in 2007. For the past 11 years we grew very slowly, from 0 to 20,000 subscribers. Last year in 2018, things really shifted and went to another level. It took us 11 years to grow to 20k, and in less than 11 months we reached 76k subscribers. Today, many people are asking us what we did and how it came about. That is what this post will explain.
1. We did nothing different. I truly believe that it was God’s grace and favor. We sow, plant, and water, but it is God who gives increase and that increases is included in our media and influence. We were faithful, consistent and constantly looking to improve in serving people better. Some of our videos went viral a few years ago on facebook, but it did not do anything for our youtube channel. A few things I would encourage you to keep in mind:
- Think global. Have a vision to reach the world through your media. Do not upload to YouTube to become famous or simply because everyone is doing it nowadays. Have a conviction that it is your mission to impact the world.
- Remain consistent. Upload regularly. Produce quality content. Don’t look at the numbers, focus on your craft.
- Keep your motives pure. The correct motive for growing in social media is to add value to others, not so that we can become the next “Christian Celebrity.” Motive fuels motivation. If your motives are not pure, you become impatient and desperate. You’ll begin to beg people to subscribe and to share your content that perhaps may not even be as prime as you thought. It’s not about you, it’s about serving others. Don‚Äôt be so hasty.
2. We have one channel. I know many churches have many channels for every little ministry that they started. Unless you’re Hillsong, Elevation or Bethel, I think it is a waste of time and resources. It is better to do one channel really well, than many poorly. Many people who create different channels, do not upload content to them on regular basis and most of the time, all those channels are not related. There is not much of difference.
By creating only one channel we are focused to produce consistency. By creating only one channel we provide a variety of content that attracts different people. Our content involves sermons, testimonies, music, interviews and fun videos.
I personally don’t have a YouTube channel so I focus my energy on directing people to the HungryGen YouTube channel.
3. We have a person who responds to comments and messages. Engagement is the key. It was easier for us a year ago than today, but currently we have a team of people who try to answer questions, like the comments, remove nasty remarks every day to insure that people watching our content are heard. We get tons of testimonies of healing, salvation and spiritual breakthrough by following our ministry on YouTube.
- It adds value to people when you engage with them on youtube. Assign a person to check messages, comments and questions every week on your youtube channel.
- Add an online moderator when you go LIVE during service. We streamed our services for many years, but a few years ago we started a ministry called Online Church. Where every Sunday someone sits and moderates and engages with people who are watching the services by answering questions, praying for them and sharing links that are relevant to what is happening at the service.
- Engaging with people brings testimonies and increases giving. Today we see people who get saved and healed by joining our online church, some which eventually become financial partners with our ministry.
4. We post daily to stories and community features on youtube. Recently youtube is developing a social media platform by adding stories and an ability to post photos, polls and other things on the community feature of it.
- Post on YouTube what you post to your instagram feed. It is true that Facebook has 2 billion users and youtube has 1.5 billion users, but with recent problems that Facebook is allegedly facing, it is wise not to put all your eggs into one basket. We actually get better responses from our YouTube community than the Facebook public page.
- Copy the same instagram stories to YouTube stories. That is an important component we added to reach people. We also gave permission to our Instagram/Facebook leaders to post on YouTube as well. As of today, it’s the same content.
5. We post great content. I know that is a matter of opinion when I say that our content is great. However, it is the best we have. It’s ours. We are not trying to be someone else. We don’t post content to get views. We share deliverances, healings, and sermons. Some of those things get us into criticism, but that’s who we are.
- Post sermons with ministry time and notes. We started to add ministry time and altar call to the sermons, they are longer, but we have seen many viewers receive ministry at the end of the message. Adding sermon notes in the description is such a blessing to those watching and can create a sense of connection with the viewers and the speaker. Every sermon at the end has an invitation to subscribe to our channel.
- Post testimonies of changed lives. Every week we post testimonies from our services, testimonies of healing, salvation or water baptism. As well as live exorcisms during services. If the Bible is full of testimonies, our services should have them. Why not show the world of how great our God is.
- Custom thumbnails. Every video we post we place a high quality photo from that service and after a few days we replace that photo with a costume thumbnail with words on it, to make it more catchy. We have two people who work on these thumbnails.
- Premier, don’t just upload. YouTube has added a feature where you can premier your content instead of just uploading it. So it’s like, your uploaded sermon is going live again. People comment during it and share it. It is a great way to get more views and exposure.
- Three hashtags & tags. It‚Äôs important to maximize all that is available to each video you post to make it more discoverable. We encourage our team to use their creativity with the titles of each video.
6. We create short videos for Instagram and Facebook. From each service we cut out short 60 second clips to post each day for Instagram and Facebook. Our goal is to grow a desire in people that draws them to watch more by visiting our YouTube. We do not beg people to visit us on YouTube. The key is to create material that causes the audience member to request more from us, therefore, a link is provided for them. It’s not about us, it’s about serving others.
- Cut short 60 second sermon clips for Instagram and Facebook. From each sermon, find a good thought – cut it into a minute, add captions to it and post it on your social media and in the description mention that the full message is on YouTube.
- Cut out testimonies for social media as well. People want to see people, not just a pastor. If you go through our feed you will notice that we do our best to emphasize that the testimonies shared on stage are just as important as the sermons behind the pulpit. The testimonies do not generate less views than the sermon bites. Plus testimonies build people’s faith, defeat the devil and birth more testimonies.
Have you subscribed to the Hungry Generation channel? If yes, why? What do you enjoy the most about our channel?
Blog by Vladimir Savchuk
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