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Self-Serving Letters and Emails

Self-Serving Letters and Emails


Much of business involves inducing people to do what we want them to do. Whether it is to sign a proposal, return a call, set up an appointment, provide information or pay a bill, we are constantly nudging.

In business, to exist you must persist. But what happens if your nudgee is flat-out unresponsive? Can you still advance your agenda?

In many cases you can. Execute a classical Poingo inversion, top it off with a half-gainer and a solid plant at the end, and you’ve got your deal.

In English that means to look for opportunities to invert the situation wherein the inaction, rather than the action of your nugdee prompts the furtherance of your cause.

Your answer may be a self-serving letter or email. Example:

Your customer ordered a load of snipe bracelets, but now that you have them and are ready to deliver, you can’t get a returned phone call. After a few attempts, move into self-serving mode.

Leave a phone message, followed by a letter and an email which essentially says this:

Self Serving Message (paraphrased)

“Hello my esteemed customer, bringer of light and feeder of my children. I have spent a few seconds of my unworthy life calling to bring you excellent news about the arrival of your magnificent snipe bracelets.”

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“Alas, all which has occurred to date is that I have has the distinct pleasure of hearing the music of your voice on your voicemail machine.”

“But now I must plan on your behalf, to ensure that your valuable merchandise arrives in time for the upcoming “Accoutrement’ de Snipe” convention. I will take it upon myself to defend your interests, my friend, and deliver your valuables this Friday at 3PM.”

“If for any reason you need to modify this plan, please call me before end of day Thursday so I can best meet your expectations.”

Sucking Up
You may have noticed a certain Alladin-like obsequiousness to this message. Good catch! You are basically ramrodding your customer. At least be nice about it. Remember what Mary Poppins said about the spoonful of sugar helping the medicine go down. Frame your actions within a context of the customer’s best interest.

Multi Media Approach
Remember, I suggested a call, a letter and an email. Each additional medium of communication reduces the ability of your customer to ignore you. Where appropriate, you may also use smoke signals and carrier pidgeons. Tatoos on prominent body parts can also be effective.

Don’t Hurt Yourself
Use self-serving communications sparingly. Even more important, don’t overreach:

“Hello my most wonderful customer whose radiance shares the skies with the great deities while his feet bless the Earth with their touch. I surmise that in your greatness you may have overlooked signing the contract I have humbly offered”.(so far, so good)

“Knowing that you will soon be wanting the 7 shipping containers filled with the finest New Zealand Kiwi fruits we discussed, I am ordering their placement on the next barge coming your way. They will be nicely ripe when they arrive. I am confident that when you inhale the fragrance of these delicacies, you will immediately sign the contract and accept delivery.”

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