Summary: We have many opportunities to 'sell' the faith that we are Christians but often do not take advantage of them. Unique Selling Points as used by those involved in marketing and advertising could help us to be more proactive in sharing our faith with others
Selling the Faith
I had the pleasure of being involved in a course called Faith Pictures and the 1st session was all about opening the conversation, and started with a video about a conversation 2 ladies were having on a bus.
Its our grandson’s Christening on Sunday to which the other commented, Oh I forgot that you went to Church, why are you a Christian – why do you go to Church, and she said You can’t ask me that you should speak to the vicar.
But I do find the services very peaceful and I like that. To which she responded Peaceful – I can tell you all about peaceful, you should comer to my Pilates class it is the peaceful point of my whole week.
To which the other invited herself to the Pilates class. What an opportunity missed by NOT suggesting even in return that she could come to Church next Sunday perhaps to the Christening.
Why don’t we talk about our faith? Do we find it embarrassing or worse are we almost ashamed to be a Christian?
But really this is an example of an opportunity missed and just like me we have all missed such opportunities in the past.
But hopefully we will not do so in the future!!
We are not very good at selling ourselves as a worshiping community, in fact we are diabolical.
In the same way we are not very good at telling the world, those around us that we go to Church that we have a faith in the Lord Jesus Christ - that we are Christians. We are diabolical.
And yet we have the most wonderful experience, a life giving experience to share but we are afraid to do so.
In effect to use a secular term our individual marketing strategy is non existent.
So how does the secular world promote itself? What are the key aspects that they use, that we can use to share the Good News of Jesus?
So where do we start, how can we in our own way be better at sharing the Good News of Jesus Christ, news which the world, our society would benefit from and make life more meaningful and worthwhile.
We have a lot to learn from our present day secular society in its role of marketing something which we believe to be beneficial to everyone.
So how does the secular world market a product – they use what are called a Unique Selling Point or Proposition – a USP.
So what do we have as a USP? – I put this to a group recently as I’ve had this idea on my mind for some time and the answer was instantaneous – JESUS.
However true that is we would have to break this down into smaller components for our secular friends and associates.
Way back in the past when I was in school in our English lesson we did the components of advertising and I remember some of them, distinctly.
We all want to be loved and we all want reassurance of worth and advertising builds on these factors to sell their products.
I remember those as they are very evident in advertising e.g. the aftershave that has women chasing after you – we all want to be loved.
Or the perfume where women are swooned over, the most desirable, and seen as the most beautiful in all the world - We all want to be loved, we all want to belong.
The best USPs take a unique quality and explain how that quality will benefit customers, all in a few memorable words.
Many companies past and present use USPs as their slogans, so that they can put them in front of as many prospective customers as possible.
In fact, some of the best slogans of the past have used unique product qualities that no one would think were good selling points -- until they worked!
Are YOU WITH ME? – NO we are with the WOOLICH – in my teaching career I had a lot of fun with my students with that one – it’s a pity that Building Society don’t exist anymore – it merged.
But I’m sure you get the point if not what about the chocolate that doesn’t melt in your hands – Treets melt in your mouth NOT in your hand.
But one of the best must be ‘diamonds are forever’ and has been in use since 1948 and is still used today.
This USP is based on the fact that diamonds are almost unbreakable, last forever and thus are the perfect symbol for eternal love.
As a result, diamonds are by far the most popular choice for engagement rings.
This USP has been immortalised by the James Bond film Diamonds Are Forever, a 1971 film where Shirley Bassey performs the title theme song.