Physical mail examples

This forum is for discussing tournament formats, question styles, strategy, and such.
Post Reply
Adventure Temple Trail
Posts: 2621
Joined: Tue Jul 15, 2008 9:52 pm

Physical mail examples

Post by Adventure Temple Trail »

Many threads in this board's history have recommended that tournament hosts use physical mailers whenever possible to extend the reach of their contacts and expand their fields. Does anyone have examples of mailers that they have sent out about their tournaments in the recent past? If folks are willing to share, prospective users of physical mail in the future can have models to work off of in creating their own invites.
Matt J.
ex-Georgetown Day HS, ex-Yale
member emeritus, ACF
User avatar
Amizda Calyx
Forums Staff: Moderator
Posts: 278
Joined: Tue May 18, 2010 9:46 pm
Location: Seattle, WA

Re: Physical mail examples

Post by Amizda Calyx »

This was one of the letters I sent out in mid-September (using my alias "Mike Bentley"...). It's pretty skeletal and is essentially a modified template letter, but it has the necessary information.
Joelle Smart
Ellensburg High School, 2006–10
University of Washington, 2010–14
Rutgers University, 2015–20??
HSAPQ biology editor, 2014–2017

It is a mistake to think you can solve any major problems just with potatoes.
User avatar
2008-09 Male Athlete of the Year
Posts: 2777
Joined: Sun Nov 15, 2009 12:57 am
Location: Richmond

Re: Physical mail examples

Post by Cody »

Our mailer was targeted at mostly only-VHSL schools, so it may not be applicable to other areas.
(38.48 KiB) Downloaded 224 times
Cody Voight (he/him), VCU ‘14. I wrote lots of science and am an electrical engineer.
VCU Tournament Director ‘13-‘17. HSAPQ President ‘15-‘16. ACF Treasurer ‘19-‘20. ACF Nats ‘21 TD.
Hero of Socialist Quizbowl Labor (NSC ‘14). “esteemed colleague” of Snap Wexley, ca. 2016. Stats Hero (Nats ‘16). “stats god in the flesh, the ominous Indominus Rex” (Winter ‘20).
Quizbowl at VCU
User avatar
Forums Staff: Moderator
Posts: 2205
Joined: Wed Feb 04, 2004 6:45 pm
Location: BCA NJ / WUSTL MO / Hackensack NJ

Re: Physical mail examples

Post by jonpin »

We've sent letters advertising our middle school tournament to every middle school in Bergen County, every known academic team in North Jersey, and every team that has ever attended our tournament in the past. Because the local format is speed checks and one-part bonuses (or at least it was a decade ago, and I doubt it's gotten better), I include one page of NAQT tossups and one page of bonuses so teams have some idea what they're getting into. A copy of last year's letter is in this post.
Jon Pinyan
Coach, Bergen County Academies (NJ); former player for BCA (2000-03) and WUSTL (2003-07)
HSQB forum mod, PACE member
Stat director for: NSC '13-'15, '17; ACF '14, '17, '19; NHBB '13-'15; NASAT '11

"A [...] wizard who controls the weather" - Jerry Vinokurov
User avatar
Posts: 242
Joined: Fri Feb 12, 2010 8:55 pm

Re: Physical mail examples

Post by Grace »

Has physically mailing invitations drawn in a noticeable number of new teams to tournaments?
Grace Liu
MIT (no graduation because hahaha what a joke)
Yale University '16
High Technology High School '12
User avatar
Posts: 838
Joined: Fri Jun 06, 2008 7:14 pm

Re: Physical mail examples

Post by cchiego »

It depends on the region. It wasn't very successful in Southern California when we tried it, but it did bring a couple of new teams immediately to tournaments (out of 60 or so mailed) and, perhaps as importantly, put quiz bowl on the radar at a few schools so when we contacted them in the future they recognized what it was. On the other hand, I know of plenty of tournaments in the South who rely almost entirely on paper invites year after year and have little online presence that seem to draw huge fields of teams.

Anything you can do to get the info out and possibly across the desk of someone who can make it happen seems worthwhile to me.

What we're doing in the Philly region is designing a series of letters and emails targeted to the audience. I'll post some once Ben and I have finalized them, but in general we're trying to keep them short but including links to more info should people be interested.
Chris C.
Past: UGA/UCSD/Penn
Current: Central Coast CA
User avatar
Stained Diviner
Posts: 4859
Joined: Sun Jun 13, 2004 6:08 am
Location: Chicagoland

Re: Physical mail examples

Post by Stained Diviner »

Here is the letter IHSSBCA used last year for our kickoffs. Tournaments around here are able to increase participation by sending snail mail. On the other hand, that is becoming less important each year, and it may depend on your audience. Physical mail is more likely to end up in the right place if you are not certain who the current coach is.
(52.29 KiB) Downloaded 158 times
David Reinstein
PACE VP of Outreach, Head Writer and Editor for Scobol Solo and Masonics (Illinois), TD for New Trier Scobol Solo and New Trier Varsity, Writer for NAQT (2011-2017), IHSSBCA Board Member, IHSSBCA Chair (2004-2014), PACE Member, PACE President (2016-2018), New Trier Coach (1994-2011)
Northern Central Railway
Posts: 144
Joined: Mon Nov 21, 2011 3:23 pm

Re: Physical mail examples

Post by Northern Central Railway »

Attached is the invite letter I used for the Mountain Lakes Invitational last year. Matt Weiner and Stephen Fontenot were helpful resources in terms of writing an effective invite letter. Everyone's mileage may vary, but to me it seemed like the effectiveness manifested itself in that teams who had either never played NAQT or not played NAQT in a long time but still played some kind of local format (in NJ, almost every county has their own league using varyingly bad formats) that would have otherwise not known the tournament existed in the first place came to the tournament as a result of the snail mail invite.
General Invite.docx
(16.79 KiB) Downloaded 141 times
Andrew Ibendahl
Nashville (IL) '04
DePauw '08
Former Coach, Mountain Lakes (NJ)
Post Reply