6 Free Resources to Improve Your Social Media Skills

Youth Specialties
August 11th, 2016

This post originally appeared on DARREL’S BLOG and we thought it was so wonderful that we wanted to share it too!

Every year I want to take a quantum leap in my career skills.  One of those skills is social media. To improve these skills, I originally thought I had to sign up for expensive conferences or seminars. However, I’m learning that majority of what I need to know to improve my social media skills can be found on the internet for free.

Free.  It’s the word that everyone on a church budget loves to hear. Whether your at a large or small church, you’re always trying to find ways to save some money.  But you also want to learn and grow as well, and sometimes that takes money.

However, I think there are plenty of free resources out there that can dramatically help you improve your social media skills without you spending a dime.  These resources come in the form of podcasts and blogs, and there are lots to choose from.  So in order to help you wade through all the resources out there, I curated the list down to six free resources that I know well help you improve your social media skills.

Podcasts (Video and Audio)

A few weeks ago I started a podcast called Ask Darrel. I would be lying if I didn’t say I was inspired by some of the podcasts below.  For me, podcasts are the best way to learn without breaking the bank. Majority of the content is free and I can listen or watch whenever I want.  Now there are lot of podcasts out there, so I pulled together what I think the top three are that you should be watching and listening to.  Here they are:

Gary Vaynerchuk

There are social media experts and then there’s Gary Vaynerchuk. Gary is probably my number one go-to when it comes to figuring out whether or not we should invest in a new social network or finding new ways to interact with our audience. His northeast personality maybe off-putting to some, however I think his honesty is what makes him great.

Amy Porterfield

I’m not a fan of Facebook. However, I know that I have to stay up to date on the platform, given that’s where majority of my congregation spends their time. So one of the ways I do that is by listening to Amy Porterfield. Amy is the expert on Facebook and how to you can get the most out of it.

Amy Schmittauer

If you need someone to show you to do social media with a little fun and spunk, Amy Schmittauer is the person you need to look to. Amy’s videos are short, concise and extremely helpful. She’s really good at breaking down social media for single-person operations and finding ways to make social media practical.


There are lot of blogs out there that focus on the subject of social media (in fact you’re reading one right now).  However, a lot of these blogs are just rehashes of press releases or user generated content that isn’t that great.  In my RSS reader I have about 19 different blogs, with 288 articles that I have yet to read.  There’s no way that most of us can keep up with this content.  So, I’ve reduced the list down to three blogs that I think you should reading to improve your social media skills.  Here they are:


CoSchedule is one the latest blogs that has really caught my attention. Not only is their tool CoSchedule amazing, their blog provides a unique angle that’s backed up by research. This blog is great resource if your trying to figure out how to increase the reach of your church’s blog content.


I try not to get caught up in the latest news about social networks. A lot of the time the news is hype or speculation. However, when I do need to read about the latest change in features or research, I read SocialTimes. SocialTimes is run by Adweek (which is another great publication) and it’s pretty accurate with their content and timely with the news.


Okay, so this one is not a social media website. However, 99U is really good. There are articles on productivity, creativity, routines and career advice. I like to read it when I’m feeling in a rut and need a different perspective to jolt my thinking.

Now of course, this is my list of resources that I use to improve my social media skills.  What are yours?  Share in the comment section below.


DARREL GIRARDIER is the Digital Strategy Director for Brentwood Baptist Church in Brentwood, TN. He’s married to the wonderful Amy-Jo Giardier and blogs about digital strategy, resources, and more at DARRELGIRARDIER.COM.

Youth Specialties

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in the YS Blog are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the opinion or position of YS.