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