business letter formatting
The letter has traditionally been the central medium for written news in the business world. In fact it is still like this. Even today, despite the steady growth of e-mail, SMS and other technologies, the letter is still the best choice if we want to send important information in writing to people outside our company or organization.
By nature – a printed message on paper – it gives the impression that it is important. In a sea of electronic communication the letter comes up.
Letters have many purposes: inform, convince, sell, ask, apologize, confirm and much more. The content may vary, but structurally, they have much in common. Regardless of purpose and content, the anatomy of a business letter is more or less constant.
The most common approach is indeed the least effective. Most people seem to feel that they are beginning to get into the subject of the letter, and therefore begin with unimportant information or facts that the reader already knows. Likewise, they may come out of the letter with insignificant statements that add nothing to the purpose of the message. The most important facts are somewhere in the middle of the letter.
This format is the exact opposite of the form of an effective business letter.
The psychological principle, known as the law of primacy and actuality, states that we best remember what we first see or hear and what we see or hear last. Have you ever been in a music production, either in the live theater or in the cinema? What was the song on everyone’s lips when people left the theater at the end of the show? Right – the big final number. And of course that’s usually a repeat of — you guessed it, the big opening number!
This is because Andrew Lloyd Webber and other impresarios understand and exploit the law of primacy and timeliness. You can do the same thing by writing a business letter that emphasizes strong opening and closing.
Here is an example:
Instead of starting with “We received your letter of March 15” (which suggests the obvious), you could try: “As you requested in your letter of March 15, we enclose a copy of your statement.”
The general conclusion “Thank you for bringing this matter to our attention” could be explained by a statement on building relationships such as “Thank you for giving us the opportunity to correct the misunderstanding regarding your account business relationship with you in the Future. ”
The beginning and the end of your letter are a valuable area for the reader and you must make good use of this area. Of course this does not mean that the bulk of the letter is not important, but if you use the opening to get the reader’s attention, he or she will be more focused on your message. If you close the letter effectively, you are more likely to get the answer you want.