What is a Letter?
A letter is a form of written or printed communication exchanged between two or more entities. There are two types of letters, namely personal letters, and business letters. Personal letters are commonly exchanged between families and acquaintances. Some examples are love letters and thank you letters written in an informal yet personalized manner. On the other hand, business letters are commonly used in formal transactions. Some examples which fall into this category are recommendation letters, employment or resignation letters, and request letters.
How to Write a Letter?
People write letters to express their feelings and intentions towards another person or organization. Any letter is meant to inform, thus it must convey the exact tone in a convincing manner. Whatever the purposes may be, it's highly suggested that you follow certain formats or rules to come up with a simple letter.
1. Identify the Recipient
It's a topmost requirement in letter writing that you know the receiver of your message and their corresponding mailing address. The letter will successfully be delivered if you provide the correct details to avoid any miscommunication. Make sure that your receiver information has the correct spelling and contact information. It's also recommended that you indicate the person's exact title or company position when writing business letters.
2. Determine the Purpose of the Letter
Your intentions in writing the letter could be for business or for personal reasons. Use the correct tone and format whenever you write the letter. Clarify your purpose that you'll also know what kind of writing format to use. Letter formats include block, modified, and semi-block format. Draft the body of the letter and review so that you will have enough room for improvement.
3. Write the Letter Professionally
When writing a letter, make sure that you state your purpose directly, especially in business settings. Stop beating around the bush because your aim is to attract the attention of your receiver. However, when writing a personal message like in a friendly letter, you may use a creative approach to conveying your message. Above all, always use a respectful and professional tone to foster a smooth exchange of messages.
4. Arrange the Information Logically
Any letter has its corresponding parts that serve as a format and guide for both the sender and receiver. The parts are as follows; the sender's address, date, inside address, salutation, body, closing, enclosures, and typist initials. The information within your letter must be arranged correctly to avoid misunderstandings. While writing an employee letter always review the content from start to end once you are done with it.
5. Send the Letter to the Recipient
Recent studies conducted by the US Postal Service show that over the past decade, the number of first-class mail items sent through them has dropped by more than 50%. This indicates that people in this generation opt to send electronic mails with verified email signatures. This doesn't mean you can't send your letters through email; you still can because the choice is up to you. Emails offer convenience and swift transactions, while snail mails offer a feeling of uniqueness and originality.
What is a Business Letter?
Letters are communicational tools and serve the same purpose in business operations too. It is sent between companies to companies or clients and other parties with specific messages. The subject in these messages or letters may vary as per the businesses’ timely requirements or purposes.
What is the Purpose of Business Letters?
- To exchange information and making business relationships.
- For making inquiries or tests.
- To make and circulate a decision.
- For sending a purchase order or confirming an order delivery.
- It saves time and costs.
- To maintain a record and settle deals and transactions.
- To avoid misunderstandings and create goodwill.
Whatare the Components of a Business Letter?
- Title- Name of the letter, i.e., order, confirmation.
- Heading- The return addresses and the date.
- Inside Address- The recipient’s location.
- Salutation- Add words like ‘Sir, Dear, Ma’am’ and add their last name.
- Message- The main text.
- Close- Close politely.
- Signature- Add the name of the signing-person with the designation.
What are the Three Types of Letters?
- Formal- It follows a stipulated format, often written in a formal language, and serves the purpose of official and professional communication.
- Informal- Personal letters that you can send to relatives and friends.
- Semi-Formal- These letters are written in a polite manner and are sent to people you do not know directly.
What is the Difference Between Formal and Informal Letters?
- A formal letter follows the official language and professional tone, whereas an informal letter contains friendly messages and tone.
- Formal letters follow the third person writing oppositely informal letters follow all the first, second, and third-person writing.
- Formal letters are sent to partners, employees; informal messages are sent to friends, relatives.