Merry Christmas to All!

Posted on December 23rd, 2009 by Paul Prins

christmas From everyone here at nineteen05 we want to wish you all a Merry Christmas, a safe holiday, and wonderfully rich time with your family and loved ones.

We here have been blessed beyond measure in this past year and are so grateful to have wonderful friends and clients like all of you.

And suddenly there appeared with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying,
“Glory to God in the highest,
And on earth peace among men with whom He is pleased.”

-Luke 2:13-14

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Designing for Everyday

Posted on December 17th, 2009 by Paul Prins

church-bridgeOne of the trickiest parts about working in the technology industry or the church is that we very quickly end up in this bubble. A bubble where our concept of normal becomes skewed. In the technology side of things we assume everyone has the same or comparable gear that we do. We want to utilize our gadgets and sell our customers on them as the current trend. In web development one of these examples is mobile websites. Only a fraction of people access the web from their phones in the US (and recent cell phone improvements have made the need to develop a mobile site even less necessary).

The church is no different. Without a meticulous focus on the mission and vision of the church every organization will begin to do things simply because they can, and these new things will be exciting for the core team of people at the church. There are 3 key questions that are very simple: Keep Reading »


5 Tips from 86 Notebooks – Michael Bierut

Posted on October 28th, 2009 by Paul Prins

Michael Bierut is one of the partners at Pentagram (one of the most well known agencies in the design/advertising world). He spoke at the 99% conference and gave an insightful talk on how he has designed over the years. Not bad for a guy who says that he isn’t creative, but just loves solving problems.

“Remember who you’re doing it for, and why you’re doing it and you will not go wrong.” – Michael Bierut

The 5 Tips

  1. Listen first, then design
  2. Don’t Avoid the Obvious
  3. The Problem Contains the Solution
  4. Indulge your Obsession
  5. Love is the Answer

(via 99%)

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Development of a Brand – ScreenCast

Posted on October 21st, 2009 by Paul Prins

I have several friends who work in the advertising/design industry. Several work a few blocks form us at a firm called Space150. They redesign their entire brand every 150 days (a bit excessive for the church, but a really cool concept) and my friend Dan Jenstad documented much of the design process in this 4 minute video for a previous version. Check it out for sure. This video is from their v22 launch (they are now on v23). Check out the rest of the finished work.

If you have ever wondered all the work that goes into good design check out this video. There is so much attention to detail that really comes through when designers screen cast their creative process. While the ability to design well is a gift, it is also a long process that require hard work.

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Is the ‘Social Media Revolution’ Real?

Posted on September 17th, 2009 by Paul Prins
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For many people the idea of social media seems to be a fad or something that is inconsequential in today’s society. For much of the last decade it was seen as the place for teens and unproductive young adults. Today it has become a force to recon with. This video pulls together some amazing statistics on just how social media is transforming our culture and our world.

This reality is on of the driving forces behind many NGO projects like the One Laptop Per Child program designed to decrease the digital divide between the haves and the have not’s. It is this same reality that makes the online presence of your church so important.

So, what is your church doing to be a part of the Social Media Revolution?

Let us know in the comments below.

Video by SocialnomicsSources

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Bi-Vocational Mega Church Pastor – Tim Gray

Posted on September 10th, 2009 by Paul Prins

I personally love hearing about Bi-Vocational pastors (as that is where the Lord is leading my wife and I) and here is a man who is doing just that, at a mega church. This goes against many of the assumptions people make about bi-vocational ministers. Mainly that their ministry isn’t large enough to support them.

Enter Tim Gray

Tim not only is the Lead Pastor/Vision Director of The Bridge Community Church in Leadington, MO but also the Athletic Director for Mineral Area College. The folks over at the Catalyst Space blog did a great interview with him. He shares about his approach to church and is worth the time to listen to it. He talked about being bi-vocational starting at 4 minutes.

Just imagine preaching about tithing when you don’t draw all or any of your salary from the church among any other subjects. Since preachers asking for money regularly tops the list of things un-churched people fear about coming to church.

(Hat Nod: catalystspace )

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Managing your Churches Online Reputation

Posted on September 8th, 2009 by Paul Prins

reputation-managementI recently read the article ‘Managing an Online Reputation‘ by Kermit Pattison in the NYT. It was a great article and we recommend that you check it out online.  The three keys are to Monitor, Manage, and Promote. Below are some of the highlights:

  • Automatic Alerts
    Set up automatic alerts to notify you when your business is mentioned in a review or blog. (See Below)
  • List on Local Search Sites
    Local search sites are the new Yellow Pages — make sure your business is listed. The more complete your listing, the more likely you are to get good search results.
  • Monitor and Respond to Reviews/Critiques
    Respond to reviews to show readers that you are listening and that you care about customer service.
  • Use Review to Improve
    Online reviews are a gold mine of business intelligence. Analyze metrics to get a better sense of your customer demographics.
  • Don’t Fake Reviews
    Don’t write false reviews to puff your business or trash a competitor. You can severely damage your reputation…and look really silly.

To monitor your online reputation check out some Web tools that do just that. We use Google Alerts here at nineteen05 and simply subscribe in our RSS reader to get updates daily. We have several set up for our business name, staff member names, and some key terms related to our business. Some of the tools in that review are free, others can get quite expensive. For churches I would recommend the free options.

Free Automatic Alert Options

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Quick Guide to Twittiquette in 10 Steps

Posted on September 3rd, 2009 by Paul Prins

twitter-etiquetteWith the rise of twitter (and their 140 character limit) there has been much confusion over what should be considered appropriate and what should be avoided. As I’ve read blog after blog on the subject these are the top 10 ideas the bubble to the top.

  1. Define your purpose for this account, and be interesting
    When you clearly understand what your account is for everything will fall in line. People who follow you will understand the content you are posting, and will understand what content is coming in the future. This will attract the followers that you want.
  2. Posts that have pass-along value
    When posting something decide if it has value that someone else might pass along. This would exclude comments about what you had for breakfast or what you are doing at this very moment. Unless of course what you are doing would have value to those you are interacting with on twitter.
  3. Be a part of the Conversation
    Don’t just simply follow people. Talk to people about what is going on in life. There will be people you don’t know, and people you do. If you begin to interact you’d be surprised to watch some of these relationships make the online to offline jump.
  4. Remember it’s Public
    Be smart about what you post. Remember that anyone out there can read your tweets. To avoid subjects that would be seen as culturally taboo, unless there is a purpose for it.
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  5. Not for chatting
    We understand that people want to chat. There are several services out there for chatting online. Remember #4, that that conversation is completely public. People seeing this conversation will likely be turned off by it.
  6. Response to someone RT your tweet?
    Its flattering and encouraging when someone retweets something you posted. As a best practice send a private message to those who you can. Otherwise a short reply (@username) saying thanks goes a long way.
  7. When you RT from someone else
    Let people know that you are re-tweeting their post. It’s really simple, all you need to do is write ‘RT: @username -’ and then post the tweet. If it is to long when you re-post, see if there aren’t words you can shorten or take out.
  8. Keep your content Fresh – NO Repeats!
    Don’t keep posting the same thing. People will stop following you since they believe they already know everything you are going to share with them.
  9. Get an Icon, good description, and Custom Background
    There are very few customizable options on twitter, so use the ones you have! Use an icon people will recognize, and same goes for the background. Keep it simple. Make your description a sort of vision statement for your tweets. If you say you’re a Web Developer you should have posts about being a developer. If you say you’re a pastor you should post pastoral tweets.
  10. Watch the self promotion!
    If you are posting good and original content then the need to self promote should be minimal. This includes bragging about the number of followers that you’ve gotten to. Keep the content fresh and relevant and people will understand your value.

Thats my top 10 list. There might be something that would be added to the list. Anything you want to add to it? Leave it in the comments or reply to us on twitter @nineteen05.

Related Post: Twitter and 50 Ways to FAIL

Sources: NetworkWorld, Adam Copeland, Brandflakes,
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How People use their Time – Visualized

Posted on September 1st, 2009 by Paul Prins

people_use_timeThis really is an awesome flash visualization (via NYT) that you just have to check out online. It has a number of demographic break downs to see the different in how people use their time. You can also click on a part of the stacked line graph to see how that activity breaks down for the selected demographics.

Below are some quotes from the project that are particularly relevant to the church. Remember, the better we understand how people are using their time the more likely they will be to make sacrifices for Jesus.

“On Sundays at 11 a.m., about 13 percent of Americans are at church or participating in other religious activities.”

Time spent on Religious Activity per day:

By Race:

  • White people spent 7 minutes
  • Black people spent 17 minutes
  • Hispanic people spent 8 minutes

By Age:

  • 15-24 spent 5 minutes
  • 25-64 spent 8 minutes
  • over 64 spent 15 minutes

By Gender:

  • Men spend 7 minutes
  • Women spend 10 minutes
  • Everyone averaged 8 minutes

View the Visualization Online

(hat nod kottke)

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Seeing the Twitter Community

Posted on August 28th, 2009 by Paul Prins


This is what the twitter community would look like if it was only 100 people. It’s a fun play off the ‘if the world was a village‘ concept. Thanks mkandlez, for the graphic.

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