United Methodist Church Marketing Plan Tool
Phase 1 of the Church Marketing Plan Tool


understanding yourself & your community



values and vision...


Our Values & Vision Worksheet offers questions to encourage your thoughts about the present and future of your church. Please bring your responses to the marketing retreat.

Core Values are your church's guiding principles. These ideas state who you are as a church, no matter what changes occur in your strategies, surroundings and circumstances. Core Values detail the historical and current positive elements of your church’s personality while also describing what is most important to your church and what makes your church unique.

Exploring your church’s Core Values will provide guidance as you develop messages and strategies that align with the unique nature of your congregation. During this moment in the process, keep these three points in mind:

Core Values are not beliefs. Beliefs are theology; values are personality.

Beware of aspiring to values as you wish them to be! Focus on your church's true self – not on an alternate version of your church or on other churches' identities. Check your ego and personal faith history at the door. Your church’s Core Values should be the result of a shared agreement.

Let’s continue to the next step and discuss your church as it is now and in the future…

Phase 1: Vision

Our Values & Vision Worksheet offers questions to encourage your thoughts about the present and future of your church. Please bring your responses to the marketing retreat.



This one word has been known to perplex small churches and large companies. As an organization works to define its vision, this single question should come first:

What is a Vision Statement?

For starters, a Vision Statement can be a single sentence or a short paragraph. Beyond that, this statement should provide motivation, a big-picture dream, and an idea that carries your church 10-20 years into the future. A meaningful Vision Statement leads to higher engagement for all parties involved.

Vision also respects the Core Values of your church and points the congregation toward a desired, future destination. These forward-thinking ideas can tighten your focus so you mobilize your resources. Most pastors have a personal Vision for their church. To make that Vision a reality, staff and laity must work in concert. In fact, your Vision will help you choose the most effective strategies to reach your community.

The following two examples illustrate how a Vision Statement can form the foundation of a strategy and then tactics.

Example 1:

A church's Vision Statement is to "transform spiritually distracted families in our local community to know and love God."

The church’s strategy then seeks to reach busy moms driving kids around town. Tactics to accomplish that strategy include a) radio spots before and after school, b) a summer arts camp for kids, and c) showcasing their café's free wireless so Dad can work while waiting for his son to play basketball.

Example 2:

A church's Vision Statement is to "find and appreciate the diversity among God's creation and show everyone how to love God and love others."

The church’s strategy focuses on minorities who are seeking a church. Tactics will include a) a free English as a Second Language program, b) bilingual flyers posted at local ethnic grocery stores and restaurants, illustrating the church's openness to diversity, and c) hosting a yearly ethnic festival at the church and encouraging the minority community to participate and attend.

As you progress through the CMPT, remember that your marketing plan has the most potential for success if church leaders clearly communicate priorities that are within the church's Core Values and Vision.


Continue to: PHASE 2


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