HOW TO START AND OPERATE YOUR OWN PEN-PAL CLUB
Pen Pal clubs are very easy to start, and can provide a very comfortable “by mail” income for the sharp operators.
The best way to operate is via a monthly newsletter, and listing of new members. We’ve found that a simple, one page,
typewritten sheet is all you need to get started. This should be, or should include, a quick run-down on what your members are up to, i.e. Janice C is planning her holiday in Greece next month; Debbie O. is taking night classes to learn Spanish; John R. is thinking of changing jobs – he wants to get more involved in sales; Bon L. is setting up his own carpet cleaning business; Dave A. is wanting to move to Ireland … etc.
This kind of reader-membership involvement will get your “newsletter” off to a running start, and keep your members loyal to you because of the “gossip” you pass along in each issue.
You follow your “gossip story” with either a question and answer session, or letters from the readers. Complete the newsletter with a short story on how to meet men or women, what to say, and how to develop a friendship. The back page, or extra page, is then a listing of men and women – including a short description of each, and their addresses – wanting to correspond with or meet other people with similar tastes.
You’ll need a typewriter, paper, and names of people writing and receiving pen pal letters. You can quickly secure a start with names by answering ads (classifieds) placed in your local papers, and some nationals that have similar ads in, and it
won’t be long before you have the basic 100 replies to begin your operation.
You should have letterheads and mailing envelopes and return reply envelopes printed. Get quotes from local printers, and mail order printers.
Next, make up a sample copy of your newsletter, and an application sales letter than will explain your membership fee
of about £10 a year for the newsletter, plus £1 per month each time you carry a member’s name and address in your
“correspondents wanted” section. Be sure to ask for retorts on what members are doing, and encourage thgm to send up to date news on what they’re doing as this keeps the “personal touch” gossip supplied.
Now, send out your newsletter samples, with your sales letter/ membership application, to the list of names you have aquired.
At the same time, you should run an advertisement in as many of the small mail order publications and ad sheets as you can afford. Your ad could read something like this:
Pen Pal Listings! Nationwide circulation! £1 to: (your name and address).
Tom’s Pen Pal Letter! Monthly Club News and membership listings! £1 to: (Your name and address).
Of course, you’ll want to keep records on all your members, and continue to update the listings you carry, but basically that’s all there is to getting started. You could even run ads of this kind in your local newspapers and get a good response. We recommend that you send for sample copies of other Pen Pal Club bulletins to see how they operate and what ideas of theirs you can adapt for use in your newsletter. By all means, become a browser, and look through all the magazines and leaflets with information about pen pals and mail order introductions, every time you pass a magazine display rack.
Be sure to get your newsletter out regularly, and don’t stop advertising. Keep up your efforts to sell as many issues of
each publication as you can, expand your membership list, and get as many new listings for each issue as you possibly can.
Something you might want to consider – 3 back issues of your newsletter for £3, or as a free bonus to all new subscribers.
You could carry this idea as a free bonus in your advertising, and as a special offer in your newsletter.
You might also want to expand your income potential by offering booklets, books, tapes, motivational and informational material.
By keeping good records of all the mail you rebeive, you can also sell or rent name lists of people who have responded to
your offerings to other mail order dealers. Real opportunities exist for sales mentioned in the paragraph above – the
opportunities limited only by your imagination.