This material world is an ocean of misery. The Hare Krishna movement is a boat, headed back home, back to Godhead.
We pull people out of the water to dance and chant and feast, but we don’t want to throw them overboard when the festival ends, never to be seen again!
When they dive back into the ocean, Prabhupada’s books are a life jacket. Make sure they get one, every time.
Collecting their contact information is like the buoy & rope to pull them back in and stay connected.
Tips & Tricks
Scribbling their email address or phone number on a scrap of paper is better than nothing, but not the best. It can be lost, difficult to read, and it must be transferred onto a computer at some point anyway.
Better is to set up a landing page through a free email marketing software like Mailchimp.com. That way, you can just pull up the landing page on your smartphone, and they type in their address, phone number, name, whatever you want. You’ve got it on your list forever.
You can even set up automatic scheduled follow-up messages through such a system. Personal touch is generally better, if you can handle it!
Following up is more art than science. The more you do it, the better you get at it. Nothing can replace building strong follow-up habits.
How often should you follow up?
If you reach out completely cold and never had any interaction with the other person, follow up a maximum of six times. You really don’t have the type of relationship that gives you permission to do much more than that.
If you already had some kind of interaction and that interaction was not a clear, definite NO, then follow up as long as it takes to get a response. Never stop until you get a response.
It all depends on the context, the situation, the relationship and interactions you had with the other person.
Here’s a general schema for timing your follow-ups:
Day 1: First follow-up (+2)
Day 3: Follow-up (+4)
Day 7: Follow-up (+7)
Day 14: Follow-up (+14)
Day 28: Follow-up (+30)
Day 58: Follow-up (+30)
… from there on, once a month. You can put reminders in your calendar.
When you set up and follow a system like this, it’s easier to follow for the long-term.
Meeting someone and giving them a book is just the beginning. Make sure every encounter leads to a next step.
We have the opportunity to instruct these souls by giving them a book, exchanging contact information, and connecting them to temple programs. It takes gallons of blood to make a single devotee – go the extra mile. Make a friend! This is good preaching.
You never know who will become the next acharya. See every soul’s unlimited potential, not where they are at today. Prabhupada said if he made even one pure devotee from all his efforts, he would consider his life a success.
If you have any sort of contact list, try reaching out to them. You never know what will come of it. Have a simple script ready, and have a clear call to action at the end, whether selling them books, inviting to a program, joining a new online course, or whatever. Keep trying, for Srila Prabhupada. Good luck!