Church Printing: How Ministries Use Print to Boost Attendance

Church Printing: How Ministries Use Print to Boost Attendance

Smartpress is honored to be the digital printer for hundreds of churches across the nation. Whether you’re just beginning to spread the Word or a well-established organization, church printing allows you to engage with your community and welcome newcomers in a big way. And these same tactics can be translated to businesses and all other organizations. After all, print marketing is about engaging your audience and drawing them in (to check you out).

Jared Johnson, Director of Marketing and Communications for Grace Church in Eden Prairie, MN, explains how print has proven to be integral to his church. “In a day and age where many organizations are going to a digital-only diet, we’ve found that both print and digital hold equal weight when trying to communicate effectively and efficiently. Print materials give people something to hold, write on, and help them remember. When we’ve tried to communicate only digitally, we’ve missed out on many opportunities to communicate effectively with all generations.”

A piece of church direct mail with a blue background overlapping another mailer in white.
Various church print marketing pieces, including direct mailers, brochures, pocket folders and postcards.

Direct Mail Postcards Get the Word Out

Send intriguing Direct Mail Postcards to invite locals within a specific distance of your place of worship. In fact, a world-class online printer like Smartpress can save you tons of time by effortlessly pulling that list for you and sending it out. (Can you view your church services online? Consider sending direct mailers to assisted living facilities or retirement communities. We can pull those, too!)


When asked about how postcard printing has impacted his church, Lead Pastor Jim Funari of Journey Church in Hampden, ME, says, “They have helped us increase attendance for our Easter events and created interest and excitement for our church. Our members love that we have made inviting others easy and attractive, and visitors love that the pieces are clear and well made, which adds a sense of professionalism.”


Custom Postcards can be used for more than just mailers. Dustin Keele, Worship and Production Director at Elevation Church in Fenton, MO, asserts that personal invitation is still the most effective way of getting people to show up. He says, “We’ve adapted the way we approach postcards. We place one card on each chair, take time to pray over these cards during announcements, and encourage people to invite one friend with that card.” In doing so, he’s seen a significant increase in attendance!

A person walking back three custom banners printed with God in the Highest in swirling letters.

Three hands holding an unrolled church poster printed with Saturday Night Service in gray letters.

Banners Announce Times, Locations & Programs

Capture attention outside your facility by using Hanging Banners or Feather Flags to broadcast service times and events. When people walk through your doors, Retractable Banners can present eye-catching “Welcome” messages or be used to highlight specific classes or ministries.

Johnson says, “We’ve found that printed materials – whether it be road banners, invite cards, signage and much more – have proven to be the greatest invite and brand awareness tools for our internal and external community. Our goal is to produce creative content that’s easy for our community to connect and engage with.”

Two church brochures overlapping each other, with one open and one closed.

Four church brochures with outreach marketing and printed with We're Glad Your Here on the front.

Brochures are Compelling Takeaways

Give your guests something to take home and contemplate. Brochures can provide an overview of your church, your statement of faith and descriptions of various ministries, programs and classes. With multiple folding options and sizes, paper stocks, weights and coatings, they’re a great way to beautifully provide lots of information amidst captivating artwork.


Marilyn Payne, Graphic Designer for Life Center in Spokane, WA, says print is still viable in today’s digital age. She asserts, “Strategically using a printed communication piece is a great tool. For us, when you walk through our doors, you have two things in your hand: a phone containing an overwhelming stream of information, and a single thing that has one message on it. [Print] creates a ‘focus-on-this-now’ that you don’t get with the noise of digital content.”


Keele agrees that print is key. He says, “The quality of our print, to a degree, communicates the quality/standard of our church. Coupling good design and great printing with strong relationships is an effective way to communicate. Also, branding is everything. For a season, we met in a movie theater where there was a lot visually going on. We had to lock our branding down just so people could find us on a Sunday morning! Print helped us to reinforce our branding.”

A hand holding a church booklet printed with grace church on the front.

Stay on Budget

We recognize churches are nonprofit organizations, and thus you have a strict budget, so Smartpress offers real-time quotes and personalized online printing services. Steve Hansen, Graphic Design Associate for Grace Church, says, “Smartpress’ online quote system has been beneficial as it allows us to get instant quotes, adjust paper qualities, add print features, and know how much it will cost us. This has been helpful to our ministries as they work to stay with their budgets.”

A desk with a computer, stationery and a pair of glasses on it.

Get Personalized, Expert Service

Don’t have a designer on staff? Capitalize on our Layout Services team to help design your media. Do you have print questions? We also have a team of highly-skilled, super friendly print experts that will walk you through your entire process. Hansen says, “On custom projects or those with higher volume printing, we have had excellent service with our [Smartpress] account representative, who also has the printing experience to give us recommendations to guide us to outstanding conclusions.”

Square church postcards lined up in rows printed with Easter at Grace on the front and event details on the back.

Build a Holistic Strategy

While so much of church marketing has gone digital with online printing, Funari declares, “We have found that printed pieces are still exceptionally valuable. Our strategy is to develop print media that works with our digital media.” He concludes, “We have used Smartpress for years, for many different projects. The consistency is most impressive. Products always look good, are always delivered on time, and we are always communicated to throughout the entire process. Smartpress never disappoints.” Can we get an amen?






Hint: Need more church printing inspiration? Here you go:



2019 Bulletin Brochure Design by Journey Church
How To Have A Relationship with Jesus Saddle Stitch Booklet Design by Simeon Young, JR
Saturday Night Service Design by Rachel Clabaugh, Graphic Designer, Spokane, WA
Grace Church Designs by Steve Hansen, Graphic Design Associate, Grace Church Eden Prairie
Effingham Assembly Design by Janet Wall, Graphic Designer, Wall 2 Wall Productions
Wonder Marvel Praise etc. Design by Life Center Spokane
Glory to God Hand-Lettered Design by Lauren Ibach

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