There is a sales technique called “alligator letter.” The basic idea is that if you have pretty much “lost” a sales client (they aren’t returning your calls for a long time), you can make one last effort by sending a letter to the client and ask them to at least let you know what is going on (by providing a sheet where they can select their level of interest and a self-addressed stamped envelope). I believe it is called an alligator letter because it is meant to be an easy way for them to contact you with their intentions even if they are “swamped”
For example, something like this:___I’m still interested in purchasing your product, but I’ve been “swamped”. Please call me again___I’m no longer interested at this time, but may be in the future.___I’m still interested, but am too “swamped” to meet now, but please contact me in a few weeks
This technique can help ‘save sales’ for salespeople, because instead of giving up (or continuing to ‘hound’ an uninterested potential buyer), the salesperson may be able to find out (directly) what the situation is and know how to proceed.
I’m not in sales, but I thought that this concept might be helpful to find out what some of our inactive young women are thinking.
I did something similar to this when I was a ward-missionary and wasn’t getting anywhere with some of our new members who had stopped participating in the church and wouldn’t return my calls about scheduling their new-member discussions. I’ve adapted it for some of our (totally) inactive young women – the ones that we have never seen at church or Mutual (most are on our records as child-of-record and have almost no knowledge of the church). I have talked to most of them and invited them to activities/church, but haven’t had any progress. It is hard to know how to proceed when I don’t know what they are thinking.
So I created the following letter to send out (with a self-addressed & stamped envelope):
Hello, I’m the President of the Young Women organization of your ward (church congregation) of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
We offer youth activities, classes, and leadership & community service opportunities for girls age 12-18. We have been contacting you because you are on our church records as being a young women in the 12-18 range.
We’d love to have you join us for some of our activities so that you can get to know us and see if you’d like to participate. You might also be interested in learning more about the church and what we believe. For some basic information, you can also visit www.mormon.org
We have a Wednesday night activity almost every week from 7-830pm at the church building (address here). However, some weeks we may have an activity at a different location, so maybe call or text me (phone # here) for info if you plan on coming to an activity. We do some activities for just the girls, but some are combined with the teen boys. There is never a cost to attend – everything is provided!
You are also always welcome to join us for church on Sundays. This year, our ward meets starting at (enter time here), followed by Sunday School (classes for all ages), and then a special class for the young women.
We would love to have you participate in our youth activities and church, but if that isn’t something you’re interested in right now, we don’t want to be pests… To help me know whether you’re interested or not, please check the box that best fits your situation:□ I’m swamped right now, but I would be interested in church or youth activities in the future□ Don’t quit trying- I am interested in church or youth activities, I’m just hard to get a hold of. □ I’m not interested in youth activities or church right now, please don’t contact me for a while.
Please return this sheet to me in the stamped envelope provided
Thanks so much,(enter name and contact info here)
Notice how I only included positive choices for them to ‘check’ – ie, instead of listing “I’m not interested” as an option, I made it “I’m not interested right now…please don’t contact me for a while,” which will leave the door open for future contact.
I would probably recommend this method only for totally inactive young women who are not really responding to your efforts, have not participated in years, and probably have little to no knowledge of the church.