“following The Way” Spiritual Types Indicator

The Rev. Rich Nelson brought vast experience of ministry with youth and young adults to his study at VTS. As a priest, curriculum writer, and spiritual director he longed for better resources for discipleship and evangelism. So he developed following The Way, an online resource that helps center participants in Jesus’ Way of Love by examining their lives relative to the Great Commandment and providing resources to support their spiritual growth.

following The Way uses a popular spiritual types indicator, and Nelson dreamed of using it for social media promotion to reach the spiritual but not religious (SBNR). He used grant funding to turn the types indicator into an online quiz and promote it through targeted Facebook and Instagram ads. Through this process he gathered data on reaching SBNR persons, especially young adults, in this way.

Click here to see the video ad from Instagram:

Nelson concludes that targeted social media ads are an effective way to reach his audience (see charts below). He was disappointed that the ad campaigns didn’t result in viral sharing; however, he is inspired to continue to find ways to meet people where they are and to build a bridge to longer term, deeper engagement. He plans to continue to refine and expand the following The Way resource.

Grant Year
Recipient Name
Nelson, the Rev. Rich
Virginia Theological Seminary
North America