Seminar to Show Urban Ministries How to Effectively Market the Message and Deliver the 'Good News'

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Ministry Marketing seminar featuring industry professionals including former Executive Director of Public Relations/Communications for the T.D. Jakes Ministries and the Potter's House. Workshop topics include: marketing strategies, new media/internet publicity, public relations, graphic design & more.

October marks minority business month. The Black church is the only wholly owned and controlled institution of the Black community. According to the Hunter-Miller Group, a Chicago-based research organization, the church serves as a faith-based house of worship, provides the basis for African-American values, and serves as the central hub of the African-American community.

Additionally, the Black church encourages giving and facilitates the majority of the $11 billion philanthropic contributions that African Americans give annually to the church and other charitable organizations. Further, in order to perpetuate the flow of revenue, some churches have employed partners or corporations that help fund programs and initiatives and/or create products to sell to the public.

But churches are really concerned about getting their message out to as many people as possible. They are shrewd when it comes to church issues, preaching and teaching scriptures -- but are a little shy when in comes to marketing to the masses.

That's why Ministry Marketing Solutions, Inc. of Farmington, Michigan, has developed a one-day seminar for churches and ministries: Marketing Your Ministry: Don’t Settle... Go To the Next Level. The learning event will take place on Friday, October 20, 2006 at the Westin Hotel in Southfield, Michigan. To register call 248.281.5066 or visit: http://www.MinistryMarketingSolutions.com.

“There are so many options to market the message of the gospel and let the world know about your ministry. Technology is changing how we relate with one another -- and the church must be on the cusp of this learning curve too," said Pam Perry, Chief Visionary of Ministry Marketing Solutions and a specialist in the African American Christian market. The Detroit Free Press called Perry a "marketing whiz on an almost immortal mission."

"During the seminar we will equip urban churches and ministry leaders with the necessary tools to effectively brand and promote their organization. The mega church has a major impact on we market the message. This seminar will show attendees how to tap into that network.”

Perry, 47, is known as a "connector" who pulls together people and resources -- helping people connect to get their visions clarified and dreams realized when it comes to ministry. She has tapped some the best in the industry for The Marketing Your Ministry Seminar line up, including Tina Polite of Polite & Associates and former Executive Director of Public Relations/Communications for the Potter’s House/T.D. Jakes Ministries, from Dallas, Texas.

"She helped put Bishop T.D. Jakes on the map," said Perry. "Bishop T.D. Jakes is one of the benchmark marketers in ministry today and Tina aided in orchestrating name recognition for Jakes in major media circles. Her corporate communications expertise and insight to urban ministry is very unique -- that's why we're excited about having her lead the session on strategy."

The purpose of the seminar is to provide solutions for urban ministries in an increasingly complex technological world of marketing, media, publicity and graphic design. The focus will be on new media such as video-on-demand and on-line marketing.

Another presenter, Valerie Williams from the Inspiration Networks (INSP) will be demonstrating cutting edge technology that ministries can take advantage to reach their target market efficiently and effectively. INSP is one of the nation's leading Christian television networks headquartered in Charlotte, North Carolina.

"Most urban churches tend to lag behind the general market when it comes to technology. There is a digital divide but we plan to close that gap," said Perry. In addition to INSP, The Gospel Music Channel, Eagle Communication, Comcast Cable/Detroit, and Constant Contact will participate in the program expounding on "Digital Evangelism."

"I wanted to have a seminar during minority business month to spotlight the businesses in the African American community that labor relentlessly with our church community. We have sponsors like Mays Printing -- who is one of the first African American printers in the country, the Michigan Chronicle -- the nation's premier black newspaper that have always championed the black church," said Perry.

Other media sponsors who reach the Black Church market day-in and day-out include: DetroitGospel.com, and BlackGospelPromo.com, these companies reach the burgeoning market of African American Christians online and Radio One, the largest African American radio network of stations in the country, is also partnering with their news talk station, WCHB AM1200. Rev. Al Sharpton, Rev. Eric Michael Dyson and Mildred Gaddis are hosts and main stays in the church community on the station.

Bobby Ivory, Jr., president of Ivory Coast Communications and a multi-media graphics specialist, will lay the foundation of graphic arts during the seminar in the morning on October 20. “There’s a psychology that goes along with design," said Ivory.

"It costs money to get the right image, but it also pays off to get the right image. People are visual and understand quality when they see it. We will critique current ministry materials such as brochures, postcards, business cards, etc. and other collateral and suggest ways that they can take them from good to great."

But all the great art, technology tools and public relations tactics are worthless without a strategy. “It is imperative to develop a plan," said Polite. “Our God is strategic and works with a plan -- therefore we should come armed with strategies and cutting edge solutions to market His [God's] message -- the gospel."

The event will begin with registration at 8:00 a.m. and a breakfast buffet at 8:30 a.m. The seminar will start at 9:00 a.m. with an “executive working lunch” at noon, and continues until 2:00 p.m. concluding with a Q&A. until 3 p.m. at the Westin Hotel, Southfield.

Registration is $159.00 before October 7 and $199.00 after October 7. To register for the seminar, call Ministry Marketing Solutions at 248-281-5066 or visit http://www.ministrymarketingsolutions.com.

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