The United Methodist Church has come out with a new marketing campaign. You may have seen one of the commercials. “RETHINK CHURCH” they declare. The idea is to think of church as a verb instead of a noun – a thing we do instead of a place we go. It is a compelling idea, and it was clearly put together by a slick marketing team. A team so slick, that I think KFC probably hired them to.
Has anyone else noticed the similarities between RETHINK CHURCH and UNTHINK CHICKEN? Besides the fact that, short of a Men in Black mind sweeping gadget or a lobotomy, I’m not sure how to unthink or rethink something (I mean, I know how to think, and I know how to change my mind, but isn’t changing one’s mind actually just another new thought?), couldn’t they have at least come up with different fonts – maybe something in a seriff.
4 responses to “Thinking about Chicken and Church”
The thing is, KFC actually changed their product to something healthier and more appealing to the consuming public before they asked people to think differently about it. People were so excited about it, in fact, that they ran out of chicken and had to close stores. It was Oprah’d, for heaven’s sake.
Contrast that with “Rethink Church.”
The slick marketing team perhaps forgot to include that “change” part to our marketing package. Maybe that would have been included with the $30Million option.
And I’m sure people are already chastising me in their minds for referring to church as a product, and potential attendees as consumers. That’s fine. Church is NOT a product. Potential attendees are NOT consumers. Except that they behave in almost every way exactly as consumers behave, and tend, in their discernment, to gravitate towards churches that have the highest quality “product.”
Those communities, consequently, tend to be the ones who already see church as a verb.
Which makes me wonder if this campaign is aimed more at those of us already in the church, as opposed to those who are not connected with a faith community. You know? To shape and shake us “insiders” up.
Is a multi-million dollar marketing campaign really more effective for this purpose than actual congregational accountability to the global UMC’s mission?
I had noticed the same thing. Same colors along with the same font. Almost creepy. Here in Wisconsin, our mission statement is “Live… Give… Love… Beyond All Expectation.” Nice, right? Then Coca-Cola comes out at Christmas with their new ad campaign: Give, Live, Love. Kinda makes you wonder.
Grant – I’m with you. I think this campaign should be aimed toward the people in the pews first. I believe with all my heart that if more people were “doing” church, there wouldn’t be a need for a slick campaign.
Maybe we should start a contest of “borrowed” tag lines for the UMC.
The UMC is the choice of the next generation.
UMC action… It’s fantastic!
This Cup’s for you.
Your father’s Oldsmobile.