A business letter is commonly used when sending a communication to a business colleague, vendor, or other third party. A business letter should be concise but also comprehensive enough to make the point. Many times, a business letter will accompany a business proposal or outline an upcoming business meeting. For legal purposes, a business letter should be written in English.
There are four steps you can take to ensure that your business letter is written properly.
Step one: Identify the recipient
The first step in writing a good business letter is to identify the recipient. You should state who you are sending the letter to and include a copy of the letter in your correspondence. Your letters should be written in a polite manner and be addressed to a specific person.
If you are sending a business letter via email, it is acceptable to use first names and last names with the addressee instead of a salutation. For example, instead of writing to Michael Smith, you can write to “Mr. Smith” or “Michael” to make the email more personal. The style of the email should match the style of the letter, however, if you are writing a formal business letter, your email should match the tone.
Step two: Draft the letter
Once you have identified the recipient of your letter, it’s time to draft the letter itself. Begin by reviewing the purpose of the letter and the content you will include. You should write a preliminary draft of the letter and then edit it to make it sound polished and professional. Take your time with this step, as it will help you to create a well-crafted letter that will become easy to follow.
Step three: Style and format the letter
This step involves choosing the correct style and format of the letter. The style of your letter should match the style of the business you are writing for. If you are unsure what style to use, ask your sales representative or legal counsel for advice. You can also review our guide to legal writing styles for assistance.
The format of a letter should match the recipient of the letter. You should use a formal style for letters addressed to a legal entity and a less formal style for letters to individuals. Be consistent with the format of your letters and follow the guidelines set forth by your chosen style guide.
Step four: Proofread and edit the letter
This step is similar to the previous step, except that you are now editing the letter to make it flawless. Before you send your letter, you should proofread it for spelling, grammar, and punctuation errors. Make sure that all your i’s are dotted and your t’s are crossed. Once you have made the necessary corrections, it’s time for you to send the letter. Take a deep breath, and you are ready to hit the send button. Make sure to save the letter as a draft so that you can continue to edit it and modify it as necessary before sending it.
Writing a business letter isn’t as difficult as you may think it is. You just need to take some time to sit down and practice. Writing a good business letter doesn’t have to be difficult; it just takes some time to practice and get the hang of it. Once you have written a few letters, you will begin to see the process become easier, and you will be able to create letters that are both polished and professional.