As a business, it can be frustrating watching days, weeks, or even months pass by while you wait for reimbursement for your valuable time, products or services. Afterall, the saying “time is money” holds true when it comes to unpaid debts. According to figures from Inside Account Receivables Management, by the time receivables are 90 days overdue, they could be worth only 20% of their original value.
So, how do you create a sense of urgency for your debtors to take prompt action as opposed to remaining passive? Rather than expend unnecessary time, energy, and resources pursuing overdue invoices, allow us at Alexander, Miller & Associates to help capture the attention of your debtors by using the following powerful techniques:
- Prevent Late Payments by Invoicing Quickly
The best way to avoid overdues is by preventing them from the start. Since most of your people get hundreds of emails daily, by sending out invoices asap, you reduce the risk it getting lost amongst the clutter. Don’t feel hesitant out of a fear of appearing too eager or unprofessional. More often than not, your prompt action will reflect an unprecedented diligence and commitment to your debtors needs.
- Use clear language and eye-catching subject lines
When it comes to increasing the chances of your debtors reading your invoice, it is always best to write in the most clear and concise manner possible. Recent studies show that the average email open rate is 17.92%. Although this may seem discouraging, the more straight-forward and to the point your invoice is, the more likely a debtor will take the time to read through it.
Another way to boost your invoice open rate is to use bold, engaging words such as “Urgent” or “Past Due” in your subject line to immediately grab the debtors attention. Word choice is crucial to signal importance.
- Inspire action through negative reinforcement
A crucial step in motivating your debtor to pay their dues is by calmly explaining to them the legal ramifications if left unattended. This method works best over the phone, because it’s much easier to communicate sincerity verbally. On paper, or through an invoice, the same message might be misinterpreted or ignored completely.
Next, clearly emphasize that your goal is to help prevent your debtor from paying further interest, late fees, and from suffering any other consequences if the payment is left unattended. Lastly, provide a listening ear for your debtor and answer any of their questions or concerns regarding consequences. If handled properly, this conversation will naturally convince your client to pay their dues in a professional manner.
Communicate Quick and Clear
While some debts go unpaid for more malicious or intentional reasons, a good majority of debts are unpaid because the debtors in question don’t have a full picture of how serious or extensive their debt situation may be. Clearly communicating both the nature of their debt and the current or potential collections process, they’re far more likely to consider paying their dues.
It is no surprise that managing overdue invoices can be stressful. Thankfully, Alexander Miller, & Associates is here to help lessen your burden and free up your company’s internal resources. If managing debtors overdue invoices is putting a strain on your company’s growth and success, feel free to contact us at (832)-430-1651.