by Tim Walker

Most couples know they should date. But the reality of schedules, children with stomach viruses, money, and just the thought of the same old thing quickly become deterrents. After a while, you just quit trying.

But time alone between couples is important. It keeps them connected. It reminds them of why they got together in the first place. It’’s also why we include four Date Nights in our MarriedPeople Strategy Pack. And why we create these date nights to be fun and memorable moments for a couple, not a therapy session.

So how do you get couples to move from “we should do this,” to “let’’s actually do this”? How does the church promote Date Night for couples. Why not harness the power of social media?

Here are some tips and ideas to make a date night a trending topic with the couples in your church:

•Save the date

Set a date on the calendar that will be the official “Date Night” for your married couples. Since we provide four dates a year, that means, wait for it . . . setting aside four dates on the calendar. Not everyone will be able to go out that night, and may need to set a substitute date, but by making a night an official date night, you are showing that it’’s important. And you’’re giving couples a marker on the calendar to work around and hold sacred.

To ensure that couples save the date (in more ways than one), send out an evite or email blast with the Save the Date dates.

•Feed the buzz

As the event draws closer, create a lot of buzz online. Post messages to Facebook, send tweets via Twitter, post images to Instagram to build some excitement about Date Night. Here’s an example of something you may want to tweet:

Don’’t you and your spouse need some serious fun? [insert date] is the night to make it happen.

•Before leaving the house

Once you distribute the Date Nights, you can encourage couples to find some place new to try with smart phone apps like Yelp or Urban Spoon. You can also let them know about special deals in the area through sites like Groupon or Amazon Local.

•Out and About and offline

Unless otherwise instructed in the MarriedPeople Date Night PDF, while on their date, encourage couples to stay offline. We want them to connect with one another, and not the rest of the virtual world.

•Post Post-Event

Send out an email or post online encouraging couples to upload photos from Date Night using #mpdates. Post the pics to your church website, blog and/or Facebook page. It’’s a great way to show what fun date nights can be, and a great promo for your next “date night.”

These are just a few ideas of how you can utilize social media to create some buzz around date nights.

What are some ways your church has used social media to promote date nights?