Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Worthwhile Reads About Christian Marketing and Media

Murdock at The A-Team Blog conducted an interview with Richard Abanes, author of Rick Warren and the Purpose that Drives Him. He posted Part I today. In it he asks Abanes to respond to the suspicion of some that his book is a part of the Purpose-Driven marketing strategy.
Speaking of Purpose-Driven marketing, Tim Challies thinks there's reason to believe that the release of a new book by the marketing genius behind The Purpose-Driven Life is being stalled due to pressure from Rick Warren.

Phil Johnson, the Pyromaniac, says that virtually all of the people on Time Magazine's list of "The 25 Most Influential Evangelicals" are "fadmakers." Phil's answer to why evangelical churches are so prone to jumping on bandwagons? "A few years ago, marketing experts learned how to tap into evangelicals' infatuation with the cheap and tawdry and turn it into cash." (Something tells me Phil could come up with some winning "Pious Products").
Of all Phil says, I found the following most disturbing though not surprising:
When it comes to books, have you noticed how few truly timeless and significant volumes are being published? That's because nowadays, decisions about what to publish are driven by marketeers who have little concern for the spiritual or editorial content of a book. I have sat in meetings with publishers while their marketing experts vetted concepts for new books. "That one's too biblical." (Those are the exact words one of these Christian kitsch-peddlers actually once said in my presence to a roomful of nodding experts from the Christian publishing industry...)
Doug Groothuis explains why he thinks television doesn't lend itself to apologetics (despite Lee Strobel's commendable efforts) and calls for "medium exegesis":

American evangelicals are populists. They have always labored to reach as many people as possible for Christ using every available means and method. This motivation is praiseworthy, but should be tempered with media exegesis. Some media are not well suited for some topics and issues. Television, as I have argued in Truth Decay, favors the image over the word; it also favors certain kinds of personality (the charismatic, simplistic, telegenic, image-oriented communicator) over character and intellectual ability. Television has little patience for carefully developed arguments or nuances.


Livinginstyleonline.com said...

Is it perhaps because of the constituency who purchases Christian books do not desire books based on the bible and biblical principles. Marketers usually give people what they want.

KP said...

Ouch! That truth hurt! I fear you're right.