If your church visitor doesn’t fill out a connection card, how can you follow up with them?
They have chosen not to fill your connection card, friendship pad, pew register, guest book, etc.
They have signaled that they wish to remain anonymous. Depending on the size of your church, you might not even know they have come.
If you don’t get their contact information, you can’t send them literature, make a home visit, carry cookies to their house, or invite them to come to the next service.
How can you follow up with them if you have no record of their presence?
Give them a church visitor welcome packet before they leave.
A church visitor welcome packet gives your guest something to review when they get home after their first visit.
It provides a way for your anonymous first time visitor to learn something about your church after they have experienced your worship service for the first time.
The packet can help anonymous church visitors become a little more familiar with your church structure, background, worship practices, and beliefs.
It also provides a way to share low commitment next steps towards becoming a regular attender, if they choose to come back.
Hopefully, your awesome church hospitality will help them decide to come back, but your church visitor folder can give them information to consider once they get home.
What do you put in your Church Visitor Welcome Packet?
I’ve written about this before, so see:
- 10 Marketing Giveaways to put in your Church Welcome Folder
- 14 items to consider for your Church Visitor Packet (plus how to assemble one)
- 12 Ministry Leaders share what’s in their Visitor Welcome Folder
Five more ministry leaders have chimed in on the discussion:
David – Our guests get a box that folds to look like a very small gift. Inside is info on all major ministries, easy ways to get connected to serving and groups, a welcome note from lead pastor, and a memory stick with a couple high energy videos about the church and multiple links to our website. Goal is to move them toward connecting and be memorable…thus the gift box look.
Ron – We offer a stainless steel travel coffee mug filled with candy to new guests. This works well in getting them to fill out a card with contact information (95% effective rate). We also give a small group directory, welcome letter, CD recording of the service message, and offer free bibles, post dates for upcoming water baptisms, baby dedications, Discover Membership luncheons, an tri-fold color brochures of various ministries in the church. We have coffee, water, lemonade, bagels and sour cream, donuts etc specifically for Guests. The Congregation had other refreshment areas. We send a letter from the Pastor and call them within 24 hrs.
Leslie – We include a coffee cup, a flash drive with a video about the congregation and it beliefs and activities. We include a brochure of activities and the schedule. We invite them to a six session introduction to the congregation at the end of which they can decide to become as a member or not.
Jennie – Our visitors packet contains a contact card, brochures about our various activities, a coupon for our bookstore, a free snack coupon for our cafe, and a flower. The flower is easy to find and our congregants make a point to greet people when they see this flower. We don’t make people stand up, just raise their hand, and we applaud them for taking time to visit. Our visitors’ table in the back of the sanctuary is a place to meet the pastor after the service and get plugged in right away. We always are in gratitude for our visitors and conscious of their experience. As a follow-up, our pastor calls each visitor a couple days after their visit.
Jeanne – Our packet has a sheet welcoming them & tells about our church and what we believe. It also contains our vision and mission statement. It includes a worship CD, a teaching CD & our 10 year DVD. We have home bible studies we call Community Groups. The brochure listing the latest homes is included.It contains a church business card and info on our radio station. The service times, etc are also on the business card. We have a separate New Believer Pack with lots of info on how to receive Christ. Our church has free bibles in the chair seat backs for people to take & are encouraged to do so if they want/need one.
Don’t forget these items:
You’ll want to make sure some of the basic information about your church is available somewhere in the packet:
- Name, address, and phone number of the church.
- Service times for all regular services
- Church Website address.
- Information sheet about Children’s Ministries, for Parents
- A welcome sheet aimed at Children (not the parents).
- Welcome Letter from the pastor.
- A What’s Next sheet – the one low commitment next step that a visitor can take to making new friends.
I found this sample church visitor packet on line (a download PDF) and like how it is laid out.
Image credit: 72soul / 123RF Stock Photo
Let me ask you this?
Please share your ideas on what you put in your church visitor welcome packet in the comment field below.
Improve Your Church Hospitality
Do you want more first time church visitors to come back a second time? Taking care of your hospitality systems can help you keep more of your visitors. I’ve put an ebook together to help you review your hospitality systems.