New Student Outreach is one of the most exciting times of the year. It seems as if you’re constantly trying to meet as many students as possible. The end of the day brings excitement and exhaustion as you realize the number of contacts that God has provided.
Now you’re ready for the fun part: Follow Up. We want more than to meet students and tell them about our new LaFe plants, we want to get to know them, invite them to a Bible study or a GiG, and share the gospel with them. At this stage one of the most effective things to do with a new contact is to give them a call.
But what should we say? Often the first sentence is the hardest to get out. How do we sound excited to meet them but not awkward? Here’s a sample script I have used over the years as I make followup calls:
Hi, my name is Eric and I am with a student club on campus called _________. Is [name of student] there?
I got your name and phone number when you filled out a card at _________ [fill in name of event where you got their contact info.] (Here I pause for some sort of affirmation from them that they remember signing up.)
I am calling because I noticed you said you were interested in growing spiritually in college. I would love to get together with you for half an hour to get to know you and share some ways our club can really help you grow spiritually while in college. Would you be free Wednesday at 11am in front of the bookstore in the Student Union?
(wait for their answer)
Great. I look forward to meeting you. This is my cell number in case you need to reach me. I’ll see you Wednesday at 11am in front of the bookstore in the Student Union.
This is a simple script of a conversation that you can tweak and make your own. There is an art to it, so I want to give a couple quick explanations for why I say what I say:
When someone answers a call from a phone number they don’t recognize, the first two questions in their minds are: “Who is calling me?” and “How did they get my number?”. Until I answer those unspoken questions, they won’t really be paying attention to anything else I am saying.
Notice that I tell the person that I want to meet with them and then ask them if they are available at a certain time. This is intentional. I don’t want to ask them if they want to meet with me. I already know I want to meet with them. I focus on if they are free to get together. This helps overcome some of the hesitation in following through on something they’ve already signed up for (wanting more information about the club or Bible study).
I already have in mind a specific location on campus I want to meet them at. I don’t want to waste time in the conversation trying to come up with and agree upon a place to meet.
While not in the script above, I always have a second time I’m available to meet ready to go in case they are in class during the time I picked.
Conversations won’t always follow the script above, but having some general idea of what you want to say before you make the call can go a long way in giving you confidence as you followup contacts. I pray you’ll trust the Spirit and allow Him to guide you as you connect with the people He’s already brought your way. It’s no accident they stopped by your table, signed up for more information, and actually answer a phone call from a number they don’t recognize. God’s working in their hearts and allows us the privilege of being a part of the process.
What about you? What do you say when you are following up contacts?
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