At first glance, preaching and advertising seem worlds apart from one another. One tries to proclaim love of God and neighbor; the other tries to sell you something that you may or may not need. Yet both must compete with other ways we receive and process information in an increasingly distracted world. While most of the time preaching simply tries to muddle through this situation, advertising knows that it must continually relearn how to reclaim its audience's attention-and keep it.
Believing that preaching can benefit from advertising's laser focus on how to make its message stick, O. Wesley Allen, Jr. (a preaching professor) and Carrie La Ferle (a professor of advertising) have written this first-of-its-kind book on what preachers can learn from advertising.
Examples of these lessons include:
- Sharpening one's analysis to understand the congregation better
- Encoding a message so that listeners can decode it for their individual lives
- Understanding how the form of the sermon leads to greater or lesser effectiveness
- Building the sermon around imagery and narrative