27 tips on managing VBS data

  1. Create a database of past registrations of 3 years back or more. Send an invitation/VBS announcement each year.
  2. Local association offices have zip code mailing list or post offices of every family of zip code areas.
  3. VBS Tools Online ROCKS!
  4. Renew VBS Tools so information will be downloaded and you won’t have to retype all the registration information.
  5. Use VBS Tools for ALL VBS participants…not just the kids.
  6. Give each teacher last years registration forms for their class so they can call and personally invite children that will be in there class.
  7. Collect prospect lists from Sunday School enrollment, past attendees, etc.
  8. Monitor trends through pre-enrollment and make adjustments. (i.e.- 50% of your enrollment occurring on VBS Tools within the last 36 hours.)
  9. Provide registration packets that include nametags, parent card, etc.
  10. Consider using an EXCEL spreadsheet and an e-mail list.
  11. Send out personal invites to children who attended VBS the year before and asking them to bring a friend.
  12. Outreach Database has all age/birthday information and every outreach event attended such as sports camp, Super Wednesday, etc.
  13. Use the database to send thank you’s at the end of VBS from the director. Encourage kids to come to Sunday School and other events throughout the year.
  14. Send a room assignment card as a follow-up to their registration. Enter daily people who do not register electronically.
  15. Organize all hard copy data in a filing cabinet for next year.
  16. The week before VBS we send out a letter to all those who have pre-registered that explains drop-off/pick-up procedures and lets parents know what group their child is in. This helps avoid confusion on Monday.
  17. Clearly identify on Day 1 all visitors on registration forms. Have the data entry person pull Map Quest so directions for visits are finished by end of VBS week.
  18. Use VBS Tools to find out if multiple kids are from one family.
  19. Volunteer keeps database and adds to it throughout the year prospects for new members and registration from other kid events (i.e. – Trunk or Treat).
  20. Use EXCEL spreadsheets to utilize mailing labels, identify birthdays and send Christmas cards.
  21. Issue VBS t-shirts when registration form is turned in – high percentage received. Use completed forms for information to give to Outreach Chairperson. Use information to project class size for next year. Teachers us information to mail postcards to children the next year to give personal invitation to VBS.
  22. Keep a binder of hard copies of registration information for emergencies.
  23. Send postcards in April/May to all non-church members announcing VBS.
  24. Always include a church home or Sunday School attendance line on the registration form so that you can easily sort for those with “none” listed for a timely follow-up.
  25. Close registration to church members one week prior to VBS. Register everyone else on the first morning. This encourages pre-registration of church members and helps estimate the class sizes.
  26. We use EXCEL on a laptop at the registration table for attendance. A different page for every class (age) with categories for member/non-member, etc. (it will automatically add for you.)
  27. We set up an on-line registration form that pulls right into an EXCEL document. Over 50% registered on line last year. Much less typing for out data volunteer.

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