Tips On How To Write A Good Formal Letter

Even with the existence of emails that allow you to communicate with someone whether near or far, letter writing is still the chosen method of communication for some. Some would write a letter to an organization to apply for a job, whereas others would write it to express their gratitude towards its services.

In writing a letter, it is important that the intended message is being put across effectively. So let us share with you some good tips on making a good start to your letter and ending it with a good note.

1. Substantiate your purpose of writing the letter.
Ask yourself who you are writing this to, the message that you wish to put across to the reader, what you hope to gain from writing it, and the information that you would have to include like how you got to know about the organization, appointment dates and so on.

2. Content for the first paragraph.
In the first paragraph, you should state very clearly a brief introduction to the matter that you wish to bring up. Before writing the first paragraph, remember to mention ‘Dear X’. If you do not know the name of the person, you can write it as ‘Dear Sir/Madam’. If you know the name, write it as ‘Dear Mr/Mrs/Mdm/Miss’ and then the name.

3. Content for the body of the letter.
The body should comprise more than one paragraph and it should provide details of the matter that has been introduced in the first paragraph. If you were to use multiple paragraphs in the body, you should sub-categorize the matter into different parts, in order for the reader to have a good grasp of the information in the letter.

4. Content for the last paragraph.
You should end the letter by stating how you feel about the matter and what you hope the reader can do to look into the matter. Even though you have filed a complaint over an issue, you would still need to end it with a positive note, and such that the reader can be made clear about the message.

5. Write the letter in an acceptable manner.
As mentioned earlier, the message has to be put across effectively when writing a letter. Hence, you should take note of the following points:
- Refrain from using Jargons that may not be understood by the reader.
- Write in concise sentences.
- Refrain from making use of Passive Voice in your sentences. You should rather write ‘There was an error in the previous letter I have sent you’ instead of. ‘An error has been made in the previous letter that was sent to you’.
- Do not get emotional when writing it. Be more professional.
- Do not portray yourself through the letter as someone who thinks he or she is brilliant.
- Be straightforward but do not go overboard.

6. Standardize your letter layout.
The layout of a letter must always stay constant. If you have included comma when you start the letter with ‘Dear X’, it is also best that you include the comma when ending the letter with Yours Faithfully or Yours Sincerely.

7. Know when to use ‘Yours faithfully’ and ‘Yours sincerely’.
‘Your faithfully’ and ‘Yours sincerely’ are used in different situations. So how would you know when to use what? If you were to know the name of the person you are writing to, you should then use ‘Yours sincerely’. But if you do not know the name of the person, you should then use ‘Yours faithfully’.

Hope these tips have guided you on writing a good letter and will get you all set to convey the message well to an important associate or an organization. Who knows? That letter of yours could even leave an impression of you made by the reader.

So take your paper and pen, and start writing these tips and get started with your letter.


Rolando said...

Thanks for the reminder. It's also good to understand who your audience is. That also dictates the style, tone, and pace of the letter.


Hey Rolando!

Yeah u are right on that. It is the audience also that determines how u should write the letter. Thanks for your reminder too! =)

Mariuca said...

Thanks for the great tips NAFA. I shall put them to good use when I write my next formal letter for a client! :):):)


Hey GP!

Great to hear that. Thanks for reading this! It sure it useful for all who are constantly liaising with important people from associations or companies. =)

Mariuca said...

Oh no worries NAFA. I find many useful articles here for my work, blogging and loads more, which is why u are one of my fave sites! :):):)


Hey GP!

Aww...thanks a lot. Glad we could help u in your career and blogging life yeah? Will promise to put up more of such useful articles ok? =)