Sunday, January 18, 2009

8 Points To An Effective Collection Letter

While cleaning my filing cabinet to start the new year, I chanced
upon an article given me when I was just starting my career as a banker.
(would you like to know how old this article is? e-mail me ^-^)

8 Points To An Effective Collection Letter

1.Be short and Sweet
A collection letter has just one objective: to bring in the money owed.
Do not get involved in why the customer is late. If he had valid reason, you would have heard from him before this point.

2.Don’t use difficult words
Complex language may be a necessity in complex legal documents. A collection letter is not one of those.

3.State how much
Make it easy for the debtor. “Mr. X, you owe us P x x x as of this date.

4.State your request
You are writing the debtor for a specific reason. After reading your letter, will he?

5.Let him save face
For hundreds of years, Orientals have realized that people will take desired actions much faster if they are also offered the opportunity to save face.

6.Give him a reason
Show your debtor a potential benefit in paying and you’ll increase the chances of receiving yours.

7.Keep it pleasant
When you go at debtors with clenched fists, they react in same fashion. When they feel that you are wrong, they are justified in not paying.

8.Follow through
Don’t make any promises you don’t intend to –or can’t keep. If you set a deadline “...or else…”, then do it. Otherwise, you will appear less believable.

Some points to consider :

No banker likes to turn over to an outside collection agency, customer accounts. It’s an indication that “He has failed and is incompetent in handling accounts”. Nor is it the best move for bank public relations. It is also expensive, draining the bank’s income. Not unless, of course if it is a quasi-bank or credit card company with their questionable lending practices.

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