Business letters are a tool of formal and professional communication between two or more parties. This may be via a physical letter that comes in an envelope or an electronic letter sent through e-mails. This method of communication is common among organizations, companies, professionals, or corporations to clients and customers or each other. Business letters may also serve as official documents, memos, notices, and formal complaints and requests.
While there are more instant forms of communication, business letters create an air of professionalism and sense of urgency. To write a persuasive business letter, one must know the proper formatting and adopt the right tone. Here are some Sample Letters and a couple of pointers for writing a persuasive business letter.
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Persuasive Business Letter Format
Business Letter Formats are almost exactly the same no matter the content. The one characteristic you must remember is this: it has to appear professional.
Choose a sans serif font like Georgia or Arial. Most business letters use Times New Roman as it carries with it a reputation of formality. Don’t use too large or too small a font size. Keep it within a 10–12 point size.
Ideally, margin must only be an inch at all sides.
Most business letters should be printed in a letter-sized paper (8.5” × 11”). Long contracts are printed in a legal sized-paper (8.5” × 14”). There are some countries, however, that prefer A4-sized papers in place of letter-sized.
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Sender and Recipient Information
- For a more professional look, put your company letterhead on top. If you don’t have one, then write down your company name, location, and contact information in either the left or right top corner. If you are self-employed, write your name above your company’s.
- Because a business letter may serve as official documentation, always include the date of when you finished writing the letter.
- Know who the recipient is. Write their name, position, company name, and location.
- Know how to address the recipient. If you are unsure, you may just write their full names. Make “To Whom It May Concern” your last option.
- Time is money for business people. Go straight to the point and don’t worry about having to be flowery with your choice of words.
- Use personal pronouns like “I” when you’re stating your opinions, “we” for when you’re writing on behalf of the company, and “you” when referring to the recipient.
- Use the active voice to avoid sounding too ambiguous and impersonal.
- Be conversational when you see it appropriate. The letter is written by a person to a person. Don’t be too robotic in your letters.
- Even when writing a complaint, be courteous. There is no room for immaturity in business.
- Wrap it up nicely with a “thank you.”
Closing the Letter
- Close with a closing salutation like “best regards” or “sincerely.”
- Sign your name with a nice black pen to appear more formal.
Writing a business letter isn’t quite like writing informal letters. There are more technical rules to follow. See these Business Letter Samples for further explanation.
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