Creative Digital Engagement For Churches | Tyler Mount

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Tyler Mount, Pastor of Creative Engagement at Providence Church, kicks off season 4 talking with us about creative digital engagement for your church! Tyler shares with us creative ways to better engage our communities, making a greater impact in your community, reaching more people for Jesus and seeing your church grow!

Podcast Transcription

SHOW TRANSCRIPT

Jason Hamrock: [00:00:27] Well, Hey, Tyler, welcome to the show. How are you doing?

Tyler Mount: [00:00:31] I’m doing great. Glad to be here.

Jason Hamrock: [00:00:33] Yeah. Now it’s summertime in Raleigh, we just talked about this, it’s hot and humid.

Tyler Mount: [00:00:38] It is. It is. Our family is spending a lot of time at the pool.

Jason Hamrock: [00:00:43] A good place to be. And you have four kids, right?

Tyler Mount: [00:00:46] I do, yeah. My wife and I, we’ve been married for 16 years and we have three boys and a girl. eleven, nine, six, and four.

Jason Hamrock: [00:00:55] Wow, she’s protected, I said that earlier. Well, you have one of the most unique titles in your church, so I want to dive into a little bit about your role at the church that you are working at, Providence Church in Raleigh, North Carolina. And I want to kind of dive into that because you’re the Pastor of Creative Engagement. Which Pastor of Creative Engagement is kind of a cool title. But for our audience, why don’t you just share a little bit about your story, you know, your background, how you ended up on staff at a church?

Tyler Mount: [00:01:30] Yeah. No, it’s certainly unique, and I haven’t seen the title before and nor did I create it. I’ve been on staff here at Providence for just at two years now. But my story is non-standard, like, I’m sure a lot of our people here that are listening, parents love Jesus, was exposed to the Gospel at a young age, and responded in faith. I knew that the Lord was calling me into some type of ministry, even in my school years. I didn’t know what that was going to look like, but ended up following the Lord in theological education. I went to Southeastern Seminary in Wake Forest, North Carolina, just north of Raleigh, it’s a Baptist seminary there, I went to college there and studied the Bible and philosophy. And my wife and I were dating at the time, we were planning to go overseas thinking about missions. We were like, all right, Lord, wherever you send us, we’ll go. And then it was 2008, the International Mission Board with Baptists weren’t sending people, so we were like, okay, we can’t go, so what does this look like? Meanwhile, I played guitar and helped to lead worship all through those years and kept getting opportunities to lead worship with different worship leaders. I wasn’t the front guy, I was always the guy on the side. So not the lead singer, but always the guitar player.

Tyler Mount: [00:02:51] And those opportunities kept growing, and so as I was serving on staff, doing student ministry with my church that I’d grown up in during college, I felt the Lord lead me to do more music things and ministry in that space. So I stepped down from being on staff at church, but still obviously had to pay bills, you don’t get in the music industry because it’s super lucrative, nor the music ministry one, but we still felt the Lord was leading us in that direction as those opportunities kept coming. But at that time, my dad had bought a carpet cleaning business, okay? And so I worked with my dad in this carpet cleaning industry, which paid my bills, and I had a boss who believed in my gifting and calling. And he fueled my ability to be gone for chunks of time because I was going on tour or whatever, which was super, super unique. And so for over ten years, I was scaling up a business in a small service industry, in a market here in Raleigh, learning marketing, learning customer service, learning communication, and then I was also traveling most weekends. And I was not only playing guitar, but I grew into doing all the financial management, all of the booking, all of the contract negotiation, all the kind of business side of what it meant to run a ministry. So I was in this business and ministry space.

Tyler Mount: [00:04:20] And then Covid hit, and as many opportunities were changing for my ministry, I was realizing that I was doing the business in order to fulfill the calling on my life as somebody called to do ministry, and so it begged all these questions. Okay, so if I’m not able to go do the ministry that I thought I was called to do, should I stay in this business space? And for us, my wife and I, we felt led to explore what ministry all in was going to look like, and our church family encouraged the same. Other friends were like, hey, I think you should look at church jobs, but my background was weird, it was nonstandard.

Bart Blair: [00:05:09] You can have you could have a church with really clean carpets, like the cleanest carpets of any church in the country, probably.

Tyler Mount: [00:05:15] And we, exactly, and at the same time, I had four kids, and at the same time, I felt well educated. You know, studying at Southeastern, I thought of going back to get an MDiv to then try to get that professional degree to hop into some type of pastor role just seemed crazy. And talk to other headhunting firms, they’re like, hey, I think you should be looking into an executive type role that kind of marries some of your background. So I started a conversation with some of the people at my church even. And then, you know, long story short, this job opened up here, but it didn’t seem probable because I was late in the game. And so then we were looking all over the country, and then we got to stay, we got to stay. We were already attending Providence, and, this role, I don’t think it could be more tailor-made to my background. So as the pastor of a creative engagement here at Providence, I oversee our worship teams, our production teams, and our communications teams.

Jason Hamrock: [00:06:21] Wow. Yeah, you know, those things, so that’s really interesting because I think if you’re typically overseeing those three areas, you probably have strength in one and you’re like, yeah, I lead the other two. They tend to go hand in hand, all those three combined, and that’s a good thing or a bad thing, it depends on the church. And from what you’re sharing with me earlier, Providence is a little bit of a different church than your typical, you know, Baptist Church. So talk to us a little bit about Providence. What makes it different? You’re in Raleigh, there are tons of churches, like Walgreen, there’s one on every corner.

Tyler Mount: [00:06:58] Yeah, there are, there are a lot of churches.

Jason Hamrock: [00:07:00] Yeah. Tell us a little bit about Providence.

Tyler Mount: [00:07:02] Yeah, we, you know, Providence is an amazing place. And it was, you know, started in our founding pastors’ living room and then they moved into, I don’t know all the exact history there, we’re about to celebrate our 45th anniversary in the fall and which is amazing. But our founding pastor still attends here, still is a member here, which is, I think, just a testimony to longevity and a testimony to what I think is part of the core of Providence. There is a steadfastness and a steadiness and a commitment to truth and a commitment to trying to find ways for truth to apply to our life and to kind of activate people in their faith that they’re less committed to an institution and it feels more like a movement. Obviously, there’s been seasons of different things here at Providence, but where we currently fall, I think, is there’s a radical commitment to truth and not even necessarily a system or an ideology. So we’re not known as the charismatic church, we’re not known as the reform church, we’re not known as the conventional Baptist Church, we’re just, it’s like Providence Church there’s like a steadiness there. And even over the course of recent changes in faith spaces and all the hot-button topics that have happened over the last couple of years, Providence has stayed true to keep the message about Jesus, to keep the message about the good news of Christ, rather than pigeonholing our perspective or what we hope all of our church members believe. And we’re just super committed to trying to find a way to encourage our people to live out the faith that is exposed and encouraged in the Bible.

Jason Hamrock: [00:08:46] I love that because it’s just it’s you can’t go wrong when you’re focused on what’s true from the Bible and proclaiming the Gospel. And so if you’re carrying that out through all areas of ministry, it’s going to be attractional. Tell me a little bit, though, because, you know, I know we’re not in competition with other churches, right? We’re all on the same team if you’re an evangelical, you know, Bible-believing Jesus is the authority church, then yes, we’re on the same team. But there are some differences, right, there are some nuances. And so tell me, like, how are you guys reaching people that other churches maybe are not? What makes you different?

Tyler Mount: [00:09:26] Sure. Sure. I think that part of the core of what we do in ministry is we really do want to create a warm and welcoming environment for everybody rather than an us versus them scenario. Like we really want to look through the lens of our moments or experiences that like, even if you haven’t been to Providence before, you kind of know what you need to do or where you should go, or that kind of first impressions piece of the puzzle. And we think about radical hospitality here, a lot that people would be welcomed, you know, right from the beginning. And I think we also want to work away from the perspective that churches and church experience is often transactional. You know, growing up, it was like you come to church and then you would give your tithe or was the offertory good enough that I was willing to give up some of my money for that amount of entertainment? You know, there’s like this weird kind of transactional experience where I don’t, we look through all of that now. Like, we’re like, well, clearly you’re just trying to get something from me, and so I think that that’s I think that’s somewhat unique.

Tyler Mount: [00:10:35] And I think our, just like I said before, our steady commitment to the truth found in the Bible is just crucial. e we have series that are topical that are trying to highlight certain ideas, or we do topical sermons or series but there we still preach through a text. Our pastors are committed to teaching the Bible and teaching the whole of it, not just part of it. We’re currently in a series going through the Book of Daniel, and as you know, it’s like the first part of the book is, you know, anecdotal, it’s telling the story, its history, the dreams, it’s amazing. But then it gets on this like apocalyptic stuff and it’s just kind of wild, you know, and it sparks all kinds of conversations about the Book of Revelation and End Times. And our pastor has just done a phenomenal job navigating, how to make that feel like it’s important and that we don’t just brush over it, and it’s amazing that we that we’re celebrating a God who’s in control of the whole universe and saw the end from the beginning and all of that. So radical commitment to the Bible is crucial.

Jason Hamrock: [00:11:45] Do you have a Monday night service?

Tyler Mount: [00:11:47] We do. We do, yes, so when I got here two years ago, I got here the summer right before it started essentially, and we had never done it before. But as we were looking at the people around where our church is located in the city of Raleigh, 30% of our of the people who lived in our area work on the weekends, which makes it a lot harder to come to a Sunday morning church service. And even thinking about, you know, you go out to lunch after church on Sunday and you want to invite your server to church, you know that you just came from, it’s like, well, they probably can’t, they were probably working. Yeah. And so we started the service on a Monday night, not really knowing, we thought it would reach young people or people who worked on the weekends, but it really has turned into our most diverse opportunity that we have here at Providence. And so, yeah, on Monday nights at 6:00, we have a meal where people can come and have community and share conversation, and we have a service at 7:00 and it’s typically a little bit shorter than our Sunday morning experience, but it’s still live band, live preaching, whoever preaches Sunday preaches Monday. It’s a different band, but we try to do as similar songs as possible. And yeah, it’s a Monday night service. And so we, you know, it started out with a thing and it felt like, you know, a couple hundred people, and then it kind of dwindled. Last fall, we were like, I don’t know if this is going to go, but after the New Year, you know, the Lord’s been kind and we’ve been seeing around 150 coming on a Monday night, which is crazy.

Jason Hamrock: [00:13:21] Yeah, that’s what’s different.

Bart Blair: [00:13:24] I mean, 150 people on Monday night is bigger than 80% of the churches in the country. Right? I mean, if you think about that, right? It’s really phenomenal.

Tyler Mount: [00:13:32] I think what we’ve seen, and it’s somewhat anecdotal because, in terms of like the data points or not, we don’t know everybody, but we’ve seen people move from Monday to a Sunday morning. So maybe people they’re drawn to or invited to the community piece of a Monday night, but then they start to plug into the larger life of Providence. Because on a Sunday morning, we can have over 2000 people here on a weekend, and the scale of that type of experience is overwhelming if you’re not familiar and if you’re not like being, you know, holding hands with a friend or meeting somebody. And so I think the Monday night service has created kind of a lower scale of entry for a lot of people, and we’ve seen it just reach like elderly people who it’s hard to get up in the morning who want to come to a live service versus just live stream. We’ve seen it reach people who live a little bit farther away and they work on the weekends, and it’s just easier to come to and still want to do an in-person gathering. And so it’s really been way more varied in its demographic than we ever imagined.

Jason Hamrock: [00:14:39] Yeah. Yeah. Okay. Okay. So I want to dive into structure because you oversee worship production and communications. And as a comm guy, I kind of go, yeah, worship and productions like, you know, they’re tied together. But us comm people, we’re over on the other side of that house, right? But you oversee both, and so talk to us a little bit about, and this is really important for directors listening to this, how have you integrated or meshed these three departments together to work together in harmony to accomplish what the leadership has set out?

Tyler Mount: [00:15:17] Right. Yeah. I have a lot of meetings is what I feel like because a lot of our, you know, with so many teams and so many pieces of the puzzle, in order for me to be the kind of guy holding some of the reins, it takes a lot of time.

Bart Blair: [00:15:41] We were actually just discussing this yesterday, Tyler was telling me, we were comparing MacBook woes, and he said my battery life won’t last two hours. Which doesn’t seem like a big deal, but when you’re spending 4 hours or 5 hours a day in meetings, moving from room to room, you need a MacBook battery that’s going to last the whole day. So yeah, a lot of meetings.

Tyler Mount: [00:16:00] It’s a first-world problem, not a huge deal, but first-world. But I’m grateful that the guys said, you know, it’s time for you to get a new computer. And I said, okay. So, you know, part of what I do is, or as, as I think about it, is our Sunday morning experience for us here at Providence is a big on-ramp. We think about like the largest amount of people who are here in our building and have an opportunity to learn about who we are, catch our vision, and it’s an opportunity for people to actually plug into what it looks like here. So for us here at Providence, we see that Sunday morning experience being a hub for communicating who we are, what we’re about, and how we do it. And so that’s where we have our service meetings on Mondays, so like I think about my workflow, it’s like Monday mornings we have we have a service review meeting where we talk about what we just did on Sunday, we talk about the service that’s coming up that night, and then we talk about the services that are coming the next weekend. And that includes production, worship, you know, teaching pastors, host pastors, whoever is involved in the week coming, or the week that we just had. And then typically, then I go into a meeting with just our communications teams where I’m basically downloading our messaging calendar, and we’re talking about problems with different projects and pain points, things that are coming down the pipeline.

Tyler Mount: [00:17:31] So I meet with communications teams typically Monday morning. And I have two people on my communications team that are essentially project managers, but we all work really, really closely, our offices are combined, and we’re kind of constantly talking back and forth about all kinds of projects. And we outsource all of our graphic design to another firm, so we’re not actually designers as much as we are editors and curators. And so we have one of our team members basically manages all the website edits, all of our individual ministry content, and she does a phenomenal job. Like, you know, hey, I need t-shirts for this project, I need this for that, we have a whole online portal request space that she manages all those projects. And then another one of my teammates, Hope, she is our digital content person, so she manages our social media calendar, digital advertising, and she helps me with a lot of our kind of global art projects. Yeah, so we’re all in a very collaborative situation. But that Monday meeting is kind of our main touch point for the week altogether, but then we’re kind of bouncing around all the time. And then kind of on Tuesdays, I go into worship production world all morning where we meet with them to talk about, you know, what’s coming up on those teams. That’s like, my big team meetings are Mondays with comm, and then Tuesday mornings are with worship and production.

Jason Hamrock: [00:19:05] Okay. Yeah. I mean, you hit it, where you got to have constant communication. No pun intended with comm directors.

Tyler Mount: [00:19:13] Yeah, it’s true

Jason Hamrock: [00:19:14] But it’s one of those, you can’t rest if you start to sort of sit back and rest a little bit, things will start to wander a little bit left or right, and now you’re going to be off course and you’re not even going to realize it till it’s pretty far down the path. So I can appreciate being able to keep that team collected together and moving in the direction that leadership.

Bart Blair: [00:19:37] I want to double-click on something there, though, Jason. You and I have many, many conversations with pastors and church leaders about the way that they staff their communications teams. And, you know, for the normal size church, you know, they want to go and hire a communications director. And I’ve walked this journey with churches and they’re like, okay, I need somebody who can do graphic design, and write copy, and they’re an expert in After Effects and Adobe Premiere, and they can do all of these different things. And I think what Tyler just hit on is actually really, really important for pastors and church leaders to hear, the best comms directors that I have an opportunity to rub elbows with are not necessarily the most creative people, they’re not necessarily the people who are the experts in the Adobe Creative Suite, they are the best project managers, project coordinators. They can take 40 different things that are flying at them all at the same time, and they can get those things done and get them done in the timeline in which they need to be done. Whether that means finding volunteers in the church that can actually help support those things, whether it’s web updates or graphic design or creating social media content, or they’re outsourcing it, right, it’s that project management piece that is just so crucial. And the larger the church gets, project management is easier to scale than it is to scale a communications team If the people in your communications team are all technicians. So I just thought that was really an interesting way that you describe your team, and really the gifting that all of you you have, you wouldn’t consider yourself a graphic designer, but, you know, good graphic design when you see it.

Tyler Mount: [00:21:19] Yeah. And I think that’s actually what’s really special about our team, is that we all are younger, you know, so I think that helps with even when you think about the type of people that we’re trying to reach, and that our leadership’s not afraid of that I think is important. We certainly don’t have the secret sauce on doing it perfectly, we’re certainly still learning. I was a contract musician for years, and so I understand what it looks like to use contractors and to be one. And Providence, as you can imagine, had the time where they had, you know, the room full of graphic designers, they had the full-time video crews, they had all of this stuff. But as I look at our gatherings and those all of those things, it’s like you start having video crews that are just making videos because they need a full-time job and you don’t necessarily need one in that slot, or it begs the question, is a video really the right tool to communicate this message or is there another way? And so I’m a big fan of using contractors, but it takes more management, it’s a different kind of thing where you’re kind of having to reiterate vision a little bit more often, you have to do a little bit more work editing, but we’re not paying for a video crew when we don’t need one. And I think and again, that our graphics production company, I inherited this situation it wasn’t all mine, but I agree with it and I’m a fan of not having designers that are just sitting around. Because you don’t always need a ton of work done, you know, when it comes like right now or once we hit August, all these ministry things are popping up, we’re going to need so much more content than we do in June. And when we get closer to Christmas or Easter, there’s like all manner of stuff. And I love the ability of, you know, coordinating with the designer and be like, I don’t like this, this is not good, and I can be honest in a way that’s different than when I’m going to see them down the hall. And we can pick another designer and say, hey, let’s go with somebody else that I think will catch this vision a little bit better.

Jason Hamrock: [00:23:31] Okay. All right. Speaking of design, you guys just launched a fairly new website.

Tyler Mount: [00:23:37] We did.

Jason Hamrock: [00:23:38] What’s the URL?

Tyler Mount: [00:23:39] It’s pray.org.

Jason Hamrock: [00:23:41] That’s crazy.

Tyler Mount: [00:23:42] It’s amazing.

Jason Hamrock: [00:23:43] Yeah. I don’t know how y’all landed on that one, but well done. Yeah. So pray.org. Yep, go check it out, pray.org. Okay. So you built this website and you had some objectives in mind and one of them was you guys want to just like more engagement, and I want you to define what does that mean? Because every church has got a, you know, website, some better than others, but you wanted more engagement on your website. So talk to us about that process, what does that look like? Define more engagement. And now that it’s launched, what are you hoping that it’s accomplishing for you?

Tyler Mount: [00:24:18] So the project of redoing the website was one that was birthed out of a realization that our website was built for our own people as a catalog of services. It was built through the lens of our discipleship, you know, assimilation plan. Would you connect, grow, serve, or go? And that was like the architecture behind the website, which was not bad because it was set out to do what it was supposed to do. But then after working with Missional Marketing and even starting digging into the analytics of our website, we learned that every month between 60 and 70% of our website traffic are brand new visitors to our website who have never been on pray.org before. And so when you start thinking about that from a missional perspective and from an opportunity to reach people, it totally changes the underlying assumptions that we wanted to work with with the website. And so we wanted to try to imagine an environment that would move people to action to plug into our community. Okay? And so our hope was to promote the event, we wanted to promote opportunities to engage in our ministry more than we did on our previous website, and we wanted to promote a lot of resources. You know, you think about that we want to be a trusted source of truth for living, so we wanted to figure out a way to extend the shelf life of our pastoral content. All of our teams are writing all this stuff all the time, that’s good stuff, and maybe they’re videoing it or recording it or just we got to figure out a way to extend the shelf life of this work because it is helpful, and basically play the long term investment game of creating content that people would trust and then hopefully build enough trust in a digital space to move them into actually plugging into our community. And so with engagement, what we were looking for, what I’m looking for is I want people to stay longer. I don’t want people to bounce off of a page. I want them to find something else that they want to learn about. And hopefully, they’ll trust us more and they’ll, they’ll plug in somehow.

Tyler Mount: [00:26:43] And so we’re still this is very phase one where I’ve got a lot of vision for what it could be, but we actually don’t know if it’s going to work. You know, when we were working with the company who helped us build it, Artillery Media, they’ve been phenomenal trying to take this vision and run with it with us together, and there was no archetype for it. You know, when I looked at a lot of sites, I scoured the Internet I felt like looking at all these other churches to try to figure out what the right way to communicate it is, and I was just struck by so much of what we’re seeing is an internal communication tool. And when you think about what the website is, it’s often the broadest part of the funnel, right? It’s like all of our ministries have an opportunity to drive people to this one hub, and again, we want to decrease the transactional environment, we want to increase a relational one, and I just think it just created such an opportunity to do that.

Tyler Mount: [00:27:43] Particularly, I mean, we have a unique URL, but what’s amazing when you look at the analytics, is that’s not how people are coming there. You know, Bart and I have been working together, I mean a lot of people are just like searching for the church, or they’re coming through another ad campaign, or whatever. So the URL is a gift because it’s easy to put on a t-shirt, but it’s not the primary way that people are finding us. So don’t want to hear another pastor thinking like, oh, we’ve got to get the right URL. I don’t think that that’s really the thing. And one of the things, you know, that that I think through is, I don’t think that there’s any substitute for personalized and targeted marketing, there’s no substitute for you inviting your neighbor to church.

Jason Hamrock: [00:28:32] Exactly.

Tyler Mount: [00:28:33] There’s just no substitute for it. But if the tone of your invitation can be matched by your church’s website, that’s amazing, that’s the goal, right, is that there would be all these layers kind of hinting at it. Bart and I’ve talked about this, too, it’s like when you have an ad campaign, it shows up as a sponsored ad, Well, isn’t it better when you show up on the left side, the right side, the bottom part, you show up everywhere, then they’re more likely to click on it because then it seems like a relevant answer to their question in the search bar.

Jason Hamrock: [00:29:04] That’s right.

Tyler Mount: [00:29:04] And so, yeah, more engagement looks like they stick around on the website, so hopefully, we can build some trust and move them to plug into.

Jason Hamrock: [00:29:12] Oh, you just. You just nailed the funnel brother. Yeah, you’re speaking my language because I get, I don’t know, I get a little discouraged when I look at church websites and I see that internal brochure. I’m going, guys, this is great for your people, but they already trust you, they’re already attending. Yeah, you nailed it. Church, if you can listen to these words and implement this on your website, if you want that more engagement to build that trust so that they feel more like, yeah, these guys are for me, they’re not against me. They have something for me, that’ll lead to some people wanting to attend, right? They like you and they trust you.

Tyler Mount: [00:29:50] And part of it is unique to our model too, is like we’re not trying to, we have a live stream, but we’re not trying to be an online church, you know? I’m not against it, but like, that’s not Providence’s, you know, ministry model. And so, we’re not a franchise church, you know, we’re just trying to be faithful to where we are, but we’re also we’re just trying to think missionally as much as we can and try to reach people. And we’re in a unique demographic too, where highly educated, people are affluent, and people where Providence is located is convenient to the city. A lot of people are traveling here or moving here, they’ve come here to go to school, they get good jobs and then their grandparents show up because all the grandkids are here, so it really is a growing place. But where it’s growing, we’re also becoming less and less and less Christian. You know, the thought is the projections here are like in ten years, the expectancy is that we would be 3% churched here in Raleigh and that’s in North Carolina. You know, top of the belt buckle.

Bart Blair: [00:30:55] Yeah, it’s the buckle of the Bible belt. But, you know, you’ve got a lot of high-tech industry, too, right? And, you know, this is something that Tyler and I have noted is that they actually, compared to a lot of other churches, have a disproportionate percentage of people coming to their church website via mobile device, and very, very few on desktop, and a lot of it speaks to the the the tech-savvy nature of the people that are moving to the community. I mean, most places are mobile first and every church ought to be looking at its website through mobile first. But you know in areas like Silicon Valley and in, you know, the technology triangle there in North Carolina, there’s just a really a much higher percentage of people that are mobile-first, and many of them probably don’t ever Google anything on a desktop or a laptop.

Tyler Mount: [00:31:44] Yeah. And I would say this, too, like as we think about our website, we’re still figuring it out, and there’s been some change turbulence internally with our ministry team leaders because you know, their expectation was like, well, we had a landing page and then, you know, that’s where we put everything. And I think for a lot of churches, if there’s an illusion of communication that happens by pushing it to the Internet, if you’re not actually telling somebody or driving somebody to the Web page, no one’s necessarily going to find it. And so I think we’ve got to figure out the right way to create a mechanism that’s actually going to drive people to the page, otherwise, you’re just casting it into the black hole of the Internet.

Jason Hamrock: [00:32:32] Pretty much. Yeah, there’s a balance there with, you know, keeping the ninety-nine engaged, but your heart should be set on the one. And so there’s that…

Tyler Mount: [00:32:44] It’s tension.

Jason Hamrock: [00:32:45] Yeah. It’s tension, it’s just the balance of it all. And so yes, ministries, you are right where we need to be able to serve you so people that are looking for your stuff can find it easily. But I’m telling you, like I always talk about the kid’s page, the kid’s page should be built for that mom that doesn’t go to church and she’s a little skeptical. I don’t know if I can trust you with my four children. Right? And you’ve got to communicate that you can. And, you know, you can’t really say that, but what about other people that could communicate that through a testimonial video on why they love bringing their kids, stuff like that? So it’s just more than just, you know, a few bits of information. So I think you’re on it, you’re never done, your website’s never finished.

Tyler Mount: [00:33:25] We’re still figuring it out.

Jason Hamrock: [00:33:28] Good stuff. Well, okay, let’s wind this down. We’ve been going quite a while here. I want to also ask you, you know, who are you tapping into? Because you’re a really good leader, and you’re leading people, but who’s leading you? What do you tap into to get fed, you know, different podcasts or books or things of that nature?

Tyler Mount: [00:33:47] Yeah, no, that’s a really good question. I mean, and like I said, I’ve not been a church guy and so there’s been a deep learning or a steep learning curve, I would say, just in terms of learning. And so I’ve relied heavily on our own pastors here at Providence, our senior pastor and our executive pastor have been here a long time, so they know the people here, which is really important to me. Like you got to know the people you’re trying to care for and you’re trying to lead. So I’m asking lots of questions, like, how have you guys done this before? Did it work? You know, we’re not just trying to reproduce what they’ve always done, but if it’s not broken, there’s no reason to reboot it.

Tyler Mount: [00:34:25] Our communications team, we’re all newer, one of my teammates has been here for 5 or 6 years, but, you know, she’s lived through changes, and then we hired the other team member, she’s new and has been here just about a year. So none of us have like this is how we’ve always done it. So there’s a lot of that, just asking what has been done and trying to learn. And before I got here, our executive pastor had been working with a creative consultant, her name is Kim Meyer. Maybe you’ve heard of her, so she had been working with our executive pastor to talk through a lot of things here over a stretch of time. So over the last two years, I’ve been meeting with her once a month and that’s been super helpful. She’s been very, very encouraging and really just helping me to keep the big thing, the big thing, and to not sweat the small stuff. Because with communications you can get stuck in the weeds really, really quickly and sweat the small stuff, and so she’s been really encouraging, so when I have a question of like, should I think about this, is this something I should chase down now or should this be six months from now? She’s been like, okay, you should do that now, or wait, or whatever. And so having a having a personal coach has been a huge benefit.

Tyler Mount: [00:35:44] And, you know, I think that there’s a litany of podcasts and things that are out there. You know, Carey Nieuwhof is helpful, you know, his leadership stuff I think is helpful. And I think there’s just some of it’s just, you know, school of hard knocks and being willing to try and being humble enough to get it wrong and just say yeah, that wasn’t great, or we could have done that better, and wish I could do this. And so we’re all still learning, and I’m grateful for the space to explore.

Bart Blair: [00:36:18] I do want to mention since you mentioned Kim Meyer, we actually had last fall one of Kim’s team members, Amy Chaney, on our podcast, and I will link to that episode in the show notes of this episode. Just because Amy, Amy is one, I reached out to Kim and said, hey, do you want to be on our show? And she said, Amy is who you want to have on your show, so Amy is a super, super sharp leader and coach and is part of Kim’s team. So yeah, we’ll link to that in case anybody wants to kind of tap into that resource at a little deeper level.

Tyler Mount: [00:36:50] Yeah, I’m grateful, I think I think she’s got a lot of good thoughts. And I think that it’s important to have just really wide eyes as you think about like communication and marketing and stuff. I tend to look at a lot of things, you know, you’re watching TV, or you’re looking at ads, or you get a catalog in the mail. I’m kind of like always cataloging, you know, you’re putting different images in your banks of images in your head. And you need to be careful, you need to be really wise, you’re not just like digging around for junk. But at the same time, when you see something that’s like true, good, or beautiful, it’s like, put it somewhere where you can find it again. And so I think making sure you’re in tune with your people you’re meeting and reaching, and then if it speaks to you, then there’s a sense in which, well, maybe you should find a way for it to live somewhere else to help reach other people.

Jason Hamrock: [00:37:46] Yeah, that’s a good point. Okay. Well, Tyler, thank you for carving out some time.

Tyler Mount: [00:37:54] Sure.

Jason Hamrock: [00:37:55] Between your meetings, that’s right, hopefully, your laptop stays alive here. But, man, we really appreciate you coming on the show and just sharing your heart and allowing us to kind of peek behind the curtain with Providence and what you’ve got going on. So we really appreciate you. Thank you.

Tyler Mount: [00:38:11] Yeah, glad to be here

Bart Blair: [00:38:29] Tyler, if anybody is curious about connecting with you, maybe they have some follow-up questions or would like to know a little bit more about some of the strategies, and some of the things you’re doing, How can they connect with you?

Tyler Mount: [00:38:39] Yeah, probably the easiest way is just to email me. You can go to pray.org and find me on the staff page, or my email is just Tyler.Mount@pray.org.

Bart Blair: [00:38:53] It’s a very easy URL to remember.

Tyler Mount: [00:38:56] It’s a gift. Every time we have to renew that URL, you know, we’ve had to renew it since I’ve been here. It’s like there’s a little bit, we don’t want to mess this up, don’t want to mess up.

Bart Blair: [00:39:05] Make sure you get that right. Hey, well, thanks for being on the show, Tyler. And for those of you who have actually made it all the way to the end of this episode, thanks so much for tuning into the show. We appreciate your time, and your attention, and we really hope that you’ve been blessed by this conversation that we’ve had with Tyler. Just a quick reminder that if you haven’t yet subscribed wherever you’re listening or watching the podcast, make sure that you do that. If you’re watching on our YouTube channel, engage with us, we’ll post a question at the top of the comment section, and we’d love to know what your thoughts are, give us some feedback. And if there’s anything that Jason and I or any of our other capable coaches at Mission Marketing can do for you and your church, just let us know. You can click over to the Missional Marketing website at MissionalMarketing.com, which isn’t quite as short as pray.org, but it should be pretty easy to find MissionalMarketing.com, go to the contacts page and you can schedule an appointment with one of us. Thanks again. God bless guys.

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