Citam church program wins online viewers

Christ is the Answer Ministries (Citam) is winning in online viewership, engagements and live streams, according to a Digital Church report.

Following the Covid-19 pandemic, churches ramped up their digital engagement, with many embracing fully online Sunday services.

Between March 29 and April 26, a period covering five Sundays, the authors of the report, A Thousand Watts, tracked 12 churches, and looked specifically at their adult Sunday service streams.

The analysis looked at three sets of data, including live streams (how many gadgets are tuned in to the live online streams), engagement (how are people interacting with the content) and video views (how many eyeballs are exposed to the content).

Various Facebook, YouTube and Vimeo platforms were visited, capturing the peak live views on each of the live Sunday services live streams.

According to the report, on average on Facebook, Citam had 17,000 views, followed by ICC Nairobi with 10,880 views, Purpose Centre with 9,260, JCC Parklands with 9,000 and Parklands Baptist with 7,260.

Better engagement

On average views on YouTube, Citam had 9,192, Parklands Baptist had 4,195, Nairobi Chapel 4,108 and JCC Parklands 3,149.

“To increase visibility, churches can opt for paid reach, where spend is used on content to provide a larger potential audience. The offline equivalent is paying for a billboard to increase your visibility,” the report reads.

It added: “Our assumption is that there is some novelty in watching, an initial excitement regarding church live streams. Longer-term inferences may be made in the coming weeks and months after the novelty wears off.”

On live stream, on number of gadgets Citam had 1,217.4 on Facebook and 2,181 on YouTube. Parklands Baptist followed with 584.2 on Facebook and 1,672 on YouTube, while ICC Nairobi had 415.2 and 853.8, respectively.

To better measure success, according to the report, each church needs to dig deeper into its insights to look for metrics such as watch time (total amount of time all users have spent viewing a video), average view duration (percentage of each video each viewer watched) and audience retention (how well you retain your audience).

Citam also had better engagement metrics as its programmes on Facebook and YouTube had more reactions, comments and shares.

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