How To Create an Effective Business Letter
A business letter needs to be clear, concise and have a single business purpose. It should prompt the reader to take some action. Personality does not usually come into it. This differs from a personal letter which more accurately reflects the personality of the writer; where longer is usually better, and it does not have to influence someone to take action.
Properties of a business letter
These are the properties of an effective business letter:
- Uses the company's letterhead.
- Provides sender's contact information
- Includes a date of when letter was written
- Provides recipient contact information
- Includes a subject line, if appropriate
- Focuses on only one topic
- Uses opening salutation (ended with a colon)
- Provides closing salutation
- Spelling, grammar, punctuation, and capitalization have all been checked
- Use simple fonts and format
Affect of a well-written business letter
- Using the company letterhead makes it clear that this is a business communication.
- Incorrect spelling or grammar make the letter hard to read and detract from the author's message and reputation and make the letter hard to read.
- The organization should be logical and each paragraph of the content should flow into the next.
- Focusing on one subject will deliver a more powerful letter than one covering many subjects. It will also avoid confusion.
- A letter that is well laid out and presented in a pleasing way makes it easier to read. Ensure that the paragraph style is consistent and the appropriate fonts are used. Generally, short letters should use sans-serif fonts and longer letters should use serif fonts.
- The composition of the letter includes complete sentences of varying length. This makes the letter easier to read.
- Use an appropriate vocabulary. Use simple words and phrases that are well understood in the industry.
The letter as a whole should have a clear message, whether a call to action or source of meaningful information. Use active verbs and avoid the passive voice\.