In years past I’ve put the “Your part” at the bottom of this report and wondered if anyone made it that far. So, I’m going to give you a heads up. If you want to skip all the numbers, review, and looking forward just skip to the bottom to read how you can help others embrace the adventure of following Jesus through this ministry.
The Original Opening
It’s New Years Day morning and I’m reviewing all the 2017 numbers for Lambchow. What the numbers tell me is that 2017 was a year of change. Our website readership grew slightly, about 9%. The number of opened emails grew by 21%. Prayer requests gained 28%. The downloads and subscriptions to the Bible Studies saw the largest change with 68% growth. Another set of numbers tells me that close to 50% now access Lambchow on a tablet or phone instead of a desktop or laptop computer.
The growth in Bible Studies is mostly due to a strong surge of downloads when our USA advertising budget was increased. We spent about 3600.00 in Google advertising last year which connected 1578 folks with our Forgiveness Bible Study. Over 1300 folks accessed our “Gospel Tract” How to Receive God’s Love which is a secondary link in the ads. Many went on to access our other Bible Studies and regular articles.
Just to provide some scope. In 2017 our ads were seen over 1 million times in about 25 countries. Of those million, over 50,000 clicked the ad and landed on our website. The landing page describes the Forgiveness Bible Study, provides the text of the first lesson which is about Jesus’ ability to forgive, and offers them the opportunity to subscribe or download the rest of the study. It may look ineffective but when you compare it to industry figures our clicks are above average, our cost is much less, and the percentage that accepts the offer is in the normal range.
We pull the various numbers into a tracking number called Seeds which takes into account articles and stories read on the website, the number of unique emails opened, the number of Bible Study lessons provided, and prayer requests replied to. In 2017 our Seed count was 52,927. A 34% increase over 2016 and more than double 2015.
Here are some things the numbers don’t tell. In 2017 we met a long time goal of adding more voices to Lambchow with five additional authors contributing to our pages. A trend I hope to continue in 2018. The number of prayer requests and other emails increased, making it possible to connect with folks on a more personal basis. I have received multiple reports of Lambchow’s Bible Studies and articles being used in small groups of various kinds. For instance, one gentleman in Zambia prints each article to share with his mostly Muslim neighbors.
My plan is to continue our current publication schedule with new articles coming out Monday and Wednesday along with a Rewind article on Friday. I also plan on publishing a new short story on the last Friday of every month.
Another goal is adding two or more Bible Studies and revising our Philippian study to shorten the text and add questions. I’d also like to create a topical library on the website from previous articles with the idea of making it easier to use Lambchow as a resource.
Our Google advertising will continue with an occasional Facebook Ad when an article seems to gain traction or is timely.
A long-term goal is to increase our language reach beyond English. While the website itself can utilize Google Translator our Bible Studies cannot and need to be translated by hand.
I’m also thinking about creating a podcast out of some of our articles for those that would rather listen than read. Let me know if that is something that would interest you.
Have you hung on through all the numbers? I hope so. Or maybe you skipped it all to land here.
- Pray for the right folks to see and click the advertisements and that they would find something compelling on the landing page.
- Pray for me to hear God’s leading for direction, writing, and answering prayer requests.
- Pray for the spark which lifts an article beyond the normal scope of readers and into something viral.
- Share Lambchow with others by clicking share on Facebook, forwarding an email, or going old school by printing something out to give away.
- Lastly, consider supporting Lambchow financially.
In 2017 Lambchow established an account at a local bank. Checks can now be written to Lambchow Ministries instead of personally to me. Some things you need to know. No one is paid (nor do we plan on doing so), all donated funds go towards meeting website, email, and advertising expenses which were around $5000.00 last year. The little bit of ad revenue the website generates also goes towards meeting those expenses. Lambchow Ministries is a registered Non-Profit Corporation although it is not 501c3 for tax deductibility purposes. If you would like to support this ministry financially contact me directly or through firstname.lastname@example.org.
I sincerely wish to thank all those that supported us last year in a multitude of ways – only God knows the fruit that will come from those seeds as we encourage folks to embrace the adventure of following Jesus.