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 Among the churches that use GuestView to manage and coordinate their guest follow-up, there are a variety of strategies for who is responsible for following up with guests. We’ll cover some of those strategies in this post and talk about why you might or might not want to choose them.

Staff. If your church is fairly small, it is easy for church staff — pastors, interns or secretaries — to follow up with guests. Especially if your pastors call guests, that can be a nice personal touch that is a pleasant surprise for your guests. The disadvantages of this approach are that it misses a great opportunity to involve church members in the ministry of the church, and it can become burdensome for the staff as a church grows and as there are more guests to call.

Ministry team. Some churches have a hospitality team that greets guests on Sunday mornings and is also responsible for calling guests for follow-up. Other churches have a completely dedicated follow-up team. One key advantage of this approach is that the people doing follow-up are the very people who have an interest and gifting in extending hospitality to guests. A disadvantage of this approach is that by focusing primarily on follow-up it can be harder to make the “next step” in follow-up, to invite and involve guests in small groups, Sunday school classes, or other ministry teams.

Small group or Sunday school. Some churches perform guest follow-up as a function of small groups or Sunday school classes. Either the small group leader or some hospitality-minded family in the group has responsibility to connect with guests, invite them to meetings, and extend hospitality to them in other ways. A key advantage of this approach is that it makes a direct connection between follow-up, hospitality, and involvement of guests in the life of the church. But a weakness of this approach is that guests often choose to involve themselves in other groups or ministries. This can tempt the individuals who first made follow-up to be discouraged; and it also requires a little coordination to make sure that a guest who chose to visit a different small group doesn’t fall through the cracks.

Hybrid. At least one of the churches using GuestView takes a hybrid approach to guest follow-up. There is a small dedicated guest follow-up ministry team that makes first contact with all guests. But guests that express a particular interest in exploring the church’s small group life are referred to a particular small group for continued follow-up. The follow-up ministry team takes time to find out a guest’s geographic location and calendar availability to help them find a suitable small group. This hybrid approach carries the advantages of both the ministry-team and small-group approaches, and also avoids some of their weaknesses.

How does your church organize its guest follow-up ministry? Leave a comment to tell us!

Image from by P L Chadwick / CC BY-SA 2.0

In our last post, we observed one church’s experience using GuestView to manage their guest follow-up. One of the recommendations we made was to provide a welcome packet for your church’s guests. Below we’ve put together some ideas for your visitor welcome packets.

In the comments below, please add your own thoughts. How do you build your visitor welcome packets?


  • A simple portfolio folder. This will be easy for your guests to bring home with them. It’s worth taking care to find a good-quality folder to leave a good first impression.
  • A gift basket.
  • A coffee mug with your church logo. You can use the mug much like a gift basket.
  • A small tote bag.


Here are some ideas to get started. You should be selective so that you don’t overwhelm your guests with too much information!

  • A welcome letter from your senior pastor.
  • An informational brochure on your denomination, church-planting network or family of churches.
  • An informational brochure on your church: your statement of faith, mission and vision, history, etc.
  • A list of your church’s ministries and services, to help your guests connect and find ways to serve or receive care.
  • A directory or map of your church’s small groups or Sunday school classes.
  • Invitations to upcoming meetings or events.
  • A free book on Christian basics, such as Jerry Bridges’ The Gospel for Real Life, John Piper’s Fifty Reasons Why Jesus Came to Die, or C. J. Mahaney’s Cross-Centered Life.
  • Instead of a book, you could include a gift certificate for a free book at your church’s book store or book table.
  • A brochure or tract that clearly explains the gospel. An outstanding resource for this is Matthias Media’s Two Ways to Live.
  • A CD sampler of some of your church’s songs or hymns.
  • A card with information about your church’s online resources. If you are already using GuestView to manage connections with your guests, you can include this sort of information in an automatic welcome email that you send to your guests. Such an email could also point to a guest feedback survey.
  • A nice pen with your church logo imprinted on it.

For any printed materials, you should use high quality paper stock and printing; also be sure to have someone copy edit your materials to look for obvious errors. Quality and professionalism in presentation goes a long way toward making a good first impression!


You can deliver welcome packets to guests in a number of ways:

  • Hand them out at a guest welcome desk in your lobby.
  • Have your ushers distribute them to guests who raise their hand during the service.
  • Make them available at key traffic flow points in your building (for example, at all entrances to the auditorium).
  • Have your welcome team hand them out to guests at the front door.
  • Make them available to guests at a guest reception after the service.
This is the blog for Gospel Software. We help churches with technology solutions, and offer a number of online services for easing church administration.