We’ve been super active the last few months adding features you’ve asked for, squashing bugs and, in general, making things even more useful, user-friendly, and visually attractive.
Before we dive into specifics….
Anne has joined our PastorsLine team as a customer support specialist. Watch Anne’s short bio vid to find out more about our exciting new team member. Welcome, Anne!
Now to PastorsLine itself…
Looking for a quick overview? Here’s Anne’s 90-second roundup of it all.
Let’s talk about each feature in a bit more detail. Note that each one has its own short video (roughly 1-3 min.) that very clearly shows you the key ins and outs.
The Welcome Hub
Our newly-designed welcome hub makes it even easier to send new messages and search for those already sent.
Mark All Unread Messages As Read
Familiar from emails and social media, right? But here’s the thing: this blanket sweep is not recommended for churches who are using msgs as a means to improve their communication with their ministry.
Where it IS useful is for churches who are running campaigns because then, most of the msgs will be in answer to the data capture (FKA autoresponder) you’ve set up and will be handled there.
It is the ongoing response to msgs which strengthens your relationships with your church members and first-time visitors. So, PastorsLine makes sure that all new or unread msgs are listed at the top of the Inbox list.
We happily noticed that some churches are actively using the ‘campaigns’ option to get their ministries more involved. Unfortunately, the big msg response was clogging down their Inboxes, making them more sluggish. So, we are now loading new msgs in smaller batches, keeping the Inbox flowing and peppy. Finished handling this batch? Click on the “Unread (load more)” button for another bunch. Want to load all your msgs at once? You can do that, too.
Three Column View
From the Inbox, pulling up a new msg or sent msg will turn your PastorsLine screen into a three-column view:
- The leftmost column will show all of your previous conversations.
- The middle column will be the msg you chose (with all of its history).
- The huge update is the far right column: here you have all the contact’s info at your fingertips AND you can update this info right there—no need to switch to somewhere else and then switch back again.
This is the place where the relationships are built and nurtured.
One of your requests was an automatic scroll to the most recent msg—Done ✓ .
We’ve also added some useful information to the msg history. For example:
- on a msg sent by a subscriber—which number they used and to which member of your team it was sent.
- on a msg sent by your team—which of your team sent the msg (good when you have several team members using the same number), which number was used (good when you are using multiple numbers), and what this team member’s role is (check out the vid for an explanation of our star identifier system).
Admins can now filter conversations by telephone number. Only have time to view those msgs which are directly related to you? This is how to do it.
When sending a new msg, owners and admins can quickly change which telephone number they wish to use for the send. Sending a new msg from a different number than that used for the last sent msg? A pop-up box will point this out, so you can confirm that all is well.
Another tweak is the ability to use or create templates right from the Inbox so you don’t have to go somewhere else and then come back.
Watch the video for a reminder of more useful things you can do.
New Admin Options
Now, you control which of your team members can add or edit new contacts to the PastorsLine database. You can also see all of your team members and which numbers they are assigned to. Adding new users is easier, too.
And now to the forecast of what you can look forward to soon.
On the way...
- Planning Center (PC): Our next major focus is on this popular church management system (ChMS). We are working on an integration that will let you pull in your PC lists and contacts. We are also exploring the possibility of a link to the PC check-in buddy.
- Church Community Builder (CCB): We would like to increase our integration with CCB by connecting the PastorsLine data capture (FKA autoresponder) to the CCB process queue. Simply put, giving you the ability to work on a group automatically from within the CCB process.
- Improved PastorsLine Web Widget: Currently, adding people to your lists via our web widget is either done manually or via keywords. We’re working on tweaks which will make it easier and more automatic.
Our full feature, free trial
If you have tried our product or plan on doing so, you can now extend your trial after 30 days to get an additional 14 days. Just enter the coupon code GRACE on the billing page when logged in and select a plan. You will pay only $1 and can cancel before the 14th day and not be charged. Additionally, we give you an additional 500 credits. So go ahead, do take advantage of this offer.
If you sign up today, however, we will give you a bonus 1000 credits. This invite code DEC31 will expire December 31st, 2017. So act now.