Just finalized the Communication & Technology Track Sessions for Exponential 2011. If you do anything at a church, this is one conference you won’t want to miss!

Preconference Session: OUTSPOKEN: Conversations on Church Communications
Session facilitators include: Kem Meyer, Tim Schraeder, Justin Wise, and others.
The church has the greatest story ever told, unfortunately we don’t always do a great job of sharing it with others. In today’s hyper-connected world we need to know how to use mediums of today to communicate the timeless message of the Gospel in way that’s relevant to reach our culture. This prelab will bring together some of the leading voices that are shaping and influencing the ways churches communicate and give you the opportunity to discuss and dialogue how we can steward the opportunity we have to share the greatest story ever told with clarity.

These proven practitioners will share their insight, share how they’ve implemented significant change in their unique contexts and give you next steps to create a communications strategy for your church. All in attendance will receive a free copy of the forthcoming ebook OUTSPOKEN: Conversations on Church Communications, a collaborative ebook bringing together over 60 different voices to talk about the topic of church communications.

Breakout: The Story-formed Way: Making Disciples with Biblical Narrative and Dialogue
Speaker: Caesar Kalinowski
Is the Church speaking the language of the culture we find ourselves in? 2/3 of our planet is still illiterate, and a growing percentage of North Americans are becoming less literate. God’s story, and his interaction with man, was originally given as an oral document—a story. The Bible we have today is approximately 75% narrative. God has given us a way, for all generations, to communicate his great gospel—through story.

In this breakout we will look at the missional imperative of speaking the language of the culture and how this is being done through the use of biblical narrative to create, encourage and equip gospel communities on mission.

Breakout: Social Media for the Rest of Us
Speaker: Justin Wise
Author Clay Shirky says that we are a people “looking for a mouse.” As a society, we’ve come to expect interactivity in all that we do. What, then, do we do with a culture that expects interaction even while at church?

In this session, we’ll look at the “why?” and the “how?” of the social web. We’ll look at how you can build interactive communal experiences into the lifeblood of your church. We’ll demystify social media and see how we can harness the power of these new communication tools for the sake of the gospel. It’s social media for the rest of us.

Breakout: Reworking Church Communications
Speaker: Tim Schraeder
One of the challenges of managing church communications is knowing when you need to change. With the fast-paced culture of change we live in, being able, willing and knowing when to change is vital in staying connected with your audience. Oftentimes, conventional wisdom won’t work. Sometimes you need to REWORK how you’re communicating. Using principles and ideas adapted from the New York Times Best-Seller REWORK (Jason Fried, David Heinemeier Hansson), this session will challenge you to rework your church communications to effectively adapt your message to reach your audience

Breakout: Everything a Pastor needs to know about the Web
Speaker: Drew Goodmanson
We have all heard about the importance of a church website, social media and mobile. But how effective are these strategies really in being missional and gathering people? Learn from a 2010 study on “The State of the Church Online” involving numerous church websites & strategies where we learn what really is happening. Answer questions such as: What is an effective church website? Who is visiting your website? Where do these visitors coming from? What are best practices in design and outreach? Learn how to enhance your web ministry and impact hundreds, if not thousands of people. This valuable session will equip you with practical strategies that your church can implement whether you are an online expert or a beginner.

Breakout: Preaching on the Power and Peril of Social Media & Technology
Speaker: John Dyer
In a sermon on conflict, would you talk about email vs. face-to-face? In a sermon on giving, would you discuss the significance of writing a check vs. automatic draft? We don’t normally think about addressing technology like texting or social media in our sermons, but the people in our churches use these tools every day and they have a profound influence on everything from relationships to devotions. This session will give you a basic overview of media ecology (the study of how technology influences culture) and then use that knowledge to surface important issues you can address with your church to help them live God-honoring lives in our technological world.

2011 National New Church Conference