David Archuleta Sings at Conference: The Power of Social Media

by Larry Richman on April 9, 2012

A choir of missionaries from the Missionary Training Center sang at the Saturday March 31 session of LDS General Conference. Among the missionaries was David Archuleta, an internationally-known singer who recently began a full-time mission. Just a year ago, David Archuleta was the guest singer at the Mormon Tabernacle Choir Christmas concert at the conference center and now he’s a full-time missionary who sang in a choir at conference.

Since I was blogging and posting pictures right after each conference session, I wanted to share his picture on social media. But I hesitated, knowing how humble David is and that he wouldn’t want to make a big deal about it. In David’s goodbye-for-two-years video, he expressed his feelings about leaving music for two years so he could dedicate himself to the work of the Lord.

However, I also thought it could be a great way to help some people connect with general conference. David is very popular. The David Archuleta Facebook page has 2.37 million Likes and there are 450,000 searches on his name on Google every month. If some of these people saw the picture or found a reference to him singing at an LDS General Conference, perhaps they would want to find out more about it, maybe listen to some talks, and learn more about the Gospel.

So, on Saturday, March 31, I posted this picture to Facebook with the following comment: “In the LDS General Conference Saturday afternoon session (gc.lds.org), Elder David Archuleta sang with other missionaries in a choir. Way cool that he’s dedicating 2 years of his life to serve the Lord and share His gospel.” [Note: You can watch the video of the choir singing; they sing several times during the meeting. This screen shot is about 1:54:52 into the video.]

Within 30 minutes, it had been liked over 1,000 times. To date, it has been Liked by 9,125 people and shared 2,753 times. In addition, many of the people who shared the photo reposted it, so it has been shared many more times virally from those secondary postings.

Within a few hours of posting the picture, someone sent me this message: “I just wanted you to know that your picture of David, as you know is going viral, but that it has already begin to open doors. I have a young friend I worked with years ago who is a FB acquaintance…. She is not a member of the church but when she saw your picture and what I had posted she sent me a message….telling me she had admired David and knew a little bit about him being a Mormon…and that when she saw him in his suit with his name tag she decided right then she would like to met some missionaries from our area!! What a blessing all young men and women who go on a mission are to the church….As a member I loved how seeing David reminded me how we are all equal in the Lord’s site…..However, to a young mother of two in western Oregon….seeing him as a result of your picture….may change her life forever…. Thank you so much for taking and posting such a great example of what all missonary’s are about….”

This is what can happen when we take the initiative to use social media to share the gospel. Something as simple as a picture and a comment can have far-reaching effects. I invite you to share in the comments below your experiences in using social media for good.

Get some ideas on the Church’s page “Sharing the Gospel Online.”

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