X-Message-Number: 856
Subject: Please post
Date: Tue, 26 May 92 01:05:06 PDT

From: Carlos Mondragon
> Subject: Alcor's Literature

     I've read with interest the recent discussion regarding our CRYONICS, 
REACHING FOR TOMORROW (CRFT), which constitutes the information Alcor 
routinely supplies to persons newly interested in cryonics.  I fully agree 
with the the comments of Brian Wowk and Keith Henson (#834 & #835).  
Brian's most important point was his words about "target audience" and 
"objective"; so I'd like to elaborate:

     We've always received requests for information about cryonics 
(whenever interested folk are able to find us, or when we generate 
interest by an appearance in the media).  Our first objective, of course, 
is to fulfill the request.  The second objective is to persuade the person 
that signing up for cryonics is a personal imperative.  And thirdly, if we 
are to fail at getting a sign-up, our objective is to educate, and at 
least convince the reader that cryonics is not entirely unreasonable.

     For the most part, we don't choose our audience, it chooses us:  24% 
of information requests come from students doing term papers.  Less than 
half of these students are doing this for a biology course; most are 
completing an assignment for an English or social studies class.  66% of 
requests come from people who have seen us in the media, or have looked us 
up because they want to know more.  All we can say with certainty is that 
these folks are at least already interested enough to make the necessary 
effort to call and give up their address.  The remaining 10% of our 
audience are people who have not requested the information, rather it has 
been given to them by an Alcor member who wants them to see it.  We cannot 
afford to sent out CRFT to what we think are potentially fruitful mailing 
lists (male, thirty-something, libertarian computer professionals) on an 
unsolicited basis.  

     So how is CRFT doing given the audience and our objectives?  With the 
students, only time will tell.  Think of them as a long term investment 
(and non-profit, public education is part of our job anyway). Of the non-
student information requests we fill, after one year 5% of these people 
have signed up.  Anyone who any experience in marketing will tell you that 
that is a PHENOMENAL rate.  (Of those who only subscribe to Cryonics 
Magazine, we get about a 75% renewal rate:  equally phenomenal.)

     The problem (as described by some on this network) seems to be 
confined to those who have received CRFT unsolicited.  Although there is 
already to some degree "something for everyone" in the book, I would 
suggest that rather than try a major revision at this time, information on 
cryonics sent to people we want to convince should be tailored to the 

     The order form at the back of CRFT lists every article, brochure, and 
reprint available from Alcor.  If you are going to proselytize, I urge you 
to order at least one of each, then when you have someone whom you would 
like to introduce to cryonics show them what you think will convince them.  
(Technical papers for scientists or physicians, case histories for 
physicians or other medical professionals, etc.)  But in any case, CRFT 
still makes for an excellent overview of what we are all about and should 
be included with any information package.

Carlos Mondragon

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