Answer honestly (and comment below!): How do you view the House of Worship market? Is it a key part of your business? A market you service, but don’t see as ‘vital’? Or is it the market you’ve learned to avoid? We really do want to hear your answers, because we think this discussion will lead to new discussions, ideas and even breakthroughs.
As a guy who’s lived and breathed the church market from the inside (church staff pastor), the outside (dealer and consultant) and in-between (consulting with manufacturers on products and marketing for the church market space), I realize my perspective is valid but skewed. It’s why Gary asked me to bring insight, discussion and ideas to you – the A/V/L industry – about what SHOULD be a market that the MAJORITY of you make a significant business channel.
Yet as much as I extoll the virtues of this market and help give you the information and perspective you need to succeed, some of you have simply been burned by churches and read this with a different perspective. I hear you. In fact, I not only hear you, I want to do my best to provide an honest accounting for those churches that have been anywhere from less-than-stellar to downright horrific clients. This month, I address this in an open letter to the A/V/L industry on behalf of the churches that want to extend our sincere apologies for those who missed the opportunity to demonstrate our faith in a business relational context. This is a biggie of an article, so I hope you’ll take the time to read it and respond. Again, we are listening and willing to learn.
I also jump this month into a portion of this market that some turn up their noses to — the small churches. Yes, small almost always means very limited funds, but there’s still a great short- and long-term strategy to address this HUGE market space (over 300,000 of them) and turn a profit. It’s my hope that you’ll respond to this column, too, with your candid feedback.
The church market is one I love; but I’m also keenly aware of the issues associated with it and the horror stories of some truly bad examples. Yet, there’s more good than bad (by a long shot) and it is worth a second (or third, of tenth) look by your organization.