Hey, church, missionaries, and church communicators!
Youtube has released their 2022 Gen Z report. Why is this important?
Because we want content for them, too! In any social media platform, engagement is important. Let’s build community together and inspire people to pray, serve, give, and go with our posts.
Gen Z is 18-24 year olds. If you are a mission org, this is a good age to begin to see how God wants them to serve others. Can you use the ideas (or come up with your own) to help move them to pray, serve, give, or go on Youtube?
This interpretation of the report comes from both a mission org and church communicator perspective.
- “65% of Gen Z agree that content that’s personally relevant to them is more important than the content that lots of other people talk about.” Can we create content in our contexts that are relevant to the questions being asked or searched for by Gen Z? For a church, this is a great jumping off point. You can engage them in the questions that are important to them.
- Youtube communities are groups that actively participate in a shared identity or interest online.
- Example was “Flightspotting”. When disaster happens in an area of the world, perhaps we can show videos of people helping with the recovery? Maybe inspire them with personal stories? Short ones?
- According to a marketing article, National Geographic shows video of beautiful scenery in stories to stop the quick consummation of online content. It causes people to pause and watch. In the Youtube report, Gen Z is looking for videos that help them relax.
- Is your church a “Superfan” of something? Gen Z videos that follow someone or something and gives a narrative of it is also popular. Watch some of the videos on Youtube to get some ideas of how you, as a church, can get into good discussion with Gen Z on movies, television shows, characters, books, etc.
- “Growing fan formats include videos about how to start your own K-pop fan channel, while fancam videos — fan edits focusing on individual band members — have billions of views. K-pop labels have even started releasing these videos as official content.”
- In a church conference I attended in Georgia, they talked about meming the sermon, but how about doing this via video? “63% of Gen Z followed one or more meme accounts in the past 12-months.”
- Short is better…most of the time, right? How about produce a quick 1 minute or less “complete” soundbite that people can preview and have in the YouTube description the link to the whole version or longer version? People are watching the Sunday services in pieces anyway. What about a several part Bible study? Or a topic that covers one of Gen Z’s questions? “59% of Gen Z agree that they use short-form video apps to discover things that they then watch longer versions of.” Maybe a missionary could produce a Bible Study and have a short form video to give a preview of the study with a link in the YouTube description to the longer version?
- “People are expressing themselves through metaverse content. In the Middle East and North Africa, gamers live streaming during Ramadan carry their fasts over to their digital avatars.” Missionaries, are you into gaming? Churches, do you have gamers in your midst that can reach out to people through gaming?
- “90% of Gen Z have watched a video that helped them feel like they were in a different place.” Mission orgs! Are you doing digital prayer walks or ministry tours? Are you sharing video that help them feel like they are there in that place?
- “69% of Gen Z agree that they often find themselves returning to creators or content that feels comforting to them.” Nostalgia, comfort media, and highly aesthetic “vibe” content. The example YouTube used was a Puerto Rican artist who used 360-video to enable the viewer to “vibe out with him and his friends on a tropical beach.” Church creators can do this with Bible teachings, Sunday School, prayer walks, women’s events, camps, men’s events, etc. Mission org creators can use this to get content from missionaries overseas who are willing to share videos that help transport someone to an area. Maybe a “hang out with a missionary” day or hang out with someone who lives and is native to the area that day to learn about a people group?
Many thanks to MII for having “The Connected Church News” each week which is helpful to both the church communicator and mission org communicator. To read week one of July where this report first came to my attention, click here.