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Business Letter Format

Business Letter Format

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Business Letter Format

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  1. Business Letter Format Creating Routine Letters

  2. Learning Objectives • Analyze letter content and select an appropriate writing strategy. • Write clear and concise letters. • Identify and use appropriate salutations for letters.

  3. Letterhead Peerless Graphics 893 Dillingham Boulevard Stony Plain, AB T6K 5L9 line 12 or 2 lines below letterhead Dateline September 13, 200x 2 to 10 lines Inside Mr. T. M. Wilson Address Visual Concepts Enterprises 1256 Lumsden Avenue Nordegg, AB T0M 3T0 1 blank line Salutation Dear Mr. Wilson: Parts of a Business Letter

  4. 1 blank line Subject Line SUBJECT: BLOCK LETTER STYLE 1 blank line Body This letter illustrates block letter style, about which you asked. All typed lines begin at the left margin. The date is usually placed two inches from the top edge of the paper or two lines below the last line of the letterhead, whichever position is lower. In modified block style, the dateline and closing lines are started at the center instead of at the left margin. Parts of a Business Letter(continued)

  5. If a subject line is included, it appears two lines below the salutation. The word SUBJECT is optional. Most readers will recognize a statement in this position as the subject without an identifying label. The complimentary close appears two lines below the end of the last paragraph. 1 blank line Complimentary Sincerely, Close 3 blank lines Parts of a Business Letter(continued)

  6. Signature Mark H. Wong Block Graphics Designer 1 blank line Reference MHW:pil Initials Parts of a Business Letter(continued)

  7. Letter Salutations Use individual’s name whenever possible. • When no name is available, use the simplified letter style, omitting a salutation. • When no name is available and you cannot use simplified style, rely on Ladies and Gentlemen or Madams and Sirs.

  8. Writing Plan for an Information Request • Opening: Ask the most important question first or express a polite command. • Body: Explain the request logically and courteously. Ask other questions if necessary. • Closing: Request a specific action with an end date, if appropriate, and show appreciation in advance.

  9. Improving Openers for Routine Request Letters Weak: I’ve been given the task of locating a convention site for my company’s meeting. I’ve checked a number of places, and your hotel looks possible. Improved: Will you please answer the following questions regarding possible accommodations at the Fairmont for a conference in May.

  10. Improving Openers for Routine Request Letters Weak: While reading MacLean's magazine, I noticed an offer of a free video describing your organization. Improved: Please send me your free video describing your organization.

  11. Improving Openers for Routine Request Letters Weak: I am conducting a training class for students of photography at our Winnipeg training center, and I saw a picture that we would like to use in our program. Improved: What is the procedure for ordering a copy of a photograph to be used for training purposes?

  12. Improving Closings for Routine Request Letters Weak: Thanks for any information you provide. Improved: We would appreciate receiving answers to these questions before April 4 so that we will have plenty of time to plan our conference.

  13. Improving Closings for Routine Request Letters Weak: Hoping to hear from you at your earliest convenience. Improved: Please send the video by August 15.

  14. Improving Closings for Routine Request Letters Weak: Thank you for your cooperation. Improved: Your answer to my inquiry will help me make my printer choice. Thanks!

  15. Writing Plan for an Order Request • Opening: Authorize purchase of items. Suggest method of shipping. • Body: List items vertically. Provide quantity, order number, description, and unit price. • Closing: Request shipment by a specific date. Tell method of payment. Express appreciation.

  16. Writing Plan for Simple Claim • Opening: Describe clearly the desired action. • Body: Explain the nature of the claim. Tell why the claim is justified. Provide details regarding action requested. • Closing: End pleasantly with a goodwill statement. Include end dating if appropriate.

  17. Writing Plan for Granting a Claim • Subject Line (optional): Identify previous correspondence. • Opening: Grant request or announce adjustment immediately. • Body: Provide details about how you are complying with the request. Try to regain the reader’s confidence. Include resale or sales promotion if appropriate. • Closing: End positively with forward-looking thought. Express confidence in future business dealings.

  18. Business Letter Format Good luck with letter writing!