In today's digital age...paper is still king when it comes to recording certain types of information quickly and easily. One of the best examples of this in the church is the connect card.
The "connect card" has many names. Sometimes it comes in the form of a "visitor card" or a "prayer card". Whatever the name, connect cards all serve the purpose of connecting guests or keeping regular attendees plugged into the body.
You're probably wondering..."Why is ChurchTrac Software talking about connect cards? Don't they just make software?"
We're glad you asked!
Our church management software is a tool that helps you do ministry better. Much like our software, a connect card is a tool which records information on guests and regular attendees that helps you get them plugged into the body of Christ. In many cases, the connect card is that first bit of information that leads to someone getting recorded into your church software's database. Since that connect card is such a vital part of getting information on your people, it obviously needs to be the best you can make it!
Whether you're a church plant making connect cards for the first time or an established church looking into revamping your current cards, they need to be these 4 things:
It can be a challenge to have a new guest or even a long time attendee take the time to fill out a connect card. With the exception of the scripture or taking notes in a service, the average person's attention span doesn't go past 60 seconds. TLDR (too long didn't read) is a real and common practice amongst all ages. I'm the first one to admit that the last thing I want to do is read and answer a multitude of questions on a card during a worship service. Keep a connect card short to avoid having people not read or fill it out.
Connect cards should be able to be read and understood in under 10 seconds. Your questions should require recall thinking, not critical. Asking for a person's name, email, and phone number are great examples of questions in which a person answers out of sheer muscle memory. If you must ask a question that requires thought, make it something easy like "would you like to be contacted" or "are you interested in serving".
The only questions you should ask on your card are the questions that you will actually record within ChurchTrac. Don't ask questions in which the answers you plan to do nothing with. Asking irrelevant questions not only creates noise, but it wastes space on your connect card that can be dedicated towards something else.
You can have the best connect cards ever made...but if they are not easily accessible they are pointless. Make sure you place your connect cards behind seats, at your welcome center, near the coffee kiosk, and everywhere in-between. The more people see connect cards, the more likely they will fill them out. I've even seen churches encourage their staff and volunteers to have connect cards with them at all times to encourage their use.
By having connect cards on your person during worship, you can easily record a guests information in a non-intrusive manner as you talk with them before or after a service. Asking someone their basic info is an easy task if you've already spent a few minutes chatting and getting to know them. Here's how easy it is:
"Joe, it was really nice to meet you! If you'd like, I can get some more info about our church emailed to you or get you connected with our pastor."
What should your connect card look like?
Every church is unique and different. Some churches may opt to have unique cards for multiple things like connecting, prayer, and serving. You may find that you can create a connect card in which you can obtain info on the front and get prayer requests on the back. To get some inspiration for your connect cards, we've included a link to some great examples.
Your connect cards are just as important as your church software. Without them, you are missing out on opportunities to connect with guests and keep your regular attendees plugged in. If you haven't yet started using a church management software (ChMS), start your free trial today with ChurchTrac.