Religion and Marketing 05/11/2009 "Need to Know" for Jewish non-profits, Fundraising Strategy
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Was John Wesley a marketing guru?
I never met the guy, so I have no clue. But I CAN tell you that his followers seem to be doing a pretty good job.  Here’s an excerpt from an article today on

The United Methodist Church launched a $20 million campaign last week to specifically reach 18- to 34-year-olds with a “Rethink Church” message. The UMC has done national advertising for several years, but this effort is aimed at not only the younger generation, but also at changing the image of the church from passive to an active community of believers “redefining the church as a 24/7 social interaction,” according to Rev. Larry Hollan, the general secretary of United Methodist Communications.

Definitely worth reading the whole article. Click here to read it.

What role should marketing play for religious institutions? That’s the question here. The UMC’s websiteis a great example of religion using modern tools to reach out to more people. And to get them to take action.
Shouldn’t Jewish organizations start doing more stuff like this? Chabad and Aish are two quick examples of powerful Jewish online resources that come to mind. I applaud them. More groups should follow their lead.
But even these sites are primarily geared towards providing information as opposed to facilitating action.  What if I want to find a synagogue to pray at, volunteer in my community, or attend a Shabbat dinner? How about a UMC style website for Jews?
Ultimately though, the product has to deliver. Marketing without substance to back it up is for naught:

Says UMC General Secretary Rev. Larry Hollan: “Advertising makes a promise, and if you live up to that promise with integrity, that’s as much as you can do.”