The Third Collection Letter
The Third Letter — If the first and the second letter, appealing to the customer's honesty, do not bring a remittance or a reply, a third letter should follow within a few days. While it should still assume that the debtor really means to pay, it should insist firmly upon an immediate settlement or at least a reply explaining why settlement has not been made and naming a definite time when payment may be expected.
Changing from the appeal to the debtor's sense of honesty and fair play, the third letter should be directed at his sense of pride, curiosity or fear. The tone of the letters naturally grows more insistent as the series progresses.
Here is a specimen letter, used as the third of a series, with an appeal to the debtor's pride as the controlling factor.
The position of your company is one of responsibility and it is because of this fact that we so willingly extended credit.
Now, that your account, totaling $215.25, has drifted along for several weeks, we fear that your rightly deserved standing in credit matters is liable to lower somewhat in the eyes of those with whom you have business connections.
We are sure that you want your credit standing to rank just as high and to be just as favorable as possible. You know, from your own experience, the value of credit.
Do not let $215.25 endanger your credit reputation.
Send us a check for that amount without delay and thus preserve your enviable credit standing.
Yours very truly,
This letter pictures the debtor's credit standing, stimulates his pride in the favorable reputation of his concern and then emphasizes the fallacy of endangering that valuable position by neglecting to pay the account in question.
The following is a good specimen directed at the debtor's sense of shame.
What would you think of a wide-awake merchant who unfairly used another's money to do business with?
And what would you think of that same merchant, when he neglected to even explain his reason for withholding that money?
Be honest and candid in forming your opinion — for that merchant is yourself.
For three months you have been using $145.20 of our money. We were glad to allow you the use of it for thirty days to help you make a success of Blank products.
But you have used the money much longer than you promised to according to our understanding when you placed the order.
You should not violate your contract and postpone further settlement of your account.
We look forward to receiving your check for the full amount next week.
Very Truly Yours,
The Third Collection Letter :
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