When writing business letters always remember that they are marketing pieces. Every communication you make helps shape positively or damages what others think of you. How well do you write business letters? How well do you communicate? Do you know how to write for business?
Your business is only as strong as the content that defines it. Whether you sell party supplies, life insurance, or consulting services, you need high-quality, compelling written materials and marketing collateral that sets you apart from your competitors and clearly conveys the benefits you offer to customers, suppliers, and partners.
As a small business owner, you must write and communicate well. Here are some tips that may help.
Crafting an Effective Business Letter
We’ve come a long way from writing business letters the traditional typewritten, snail-mailed ways of decades past, but the business letter continues to serve as an important marketing tool.
Whether you’re seeking funding from an investor, requesting project support, or suggesting a reciprocal partnership, the same basic guidelines to writing business letters apply:
- Use a professional template and letterhead. If you don’t use professionally designed and printed letterhead, there are dozens of options that can be downloaded from Microsoft Word or from the Internet.
- When writing business letters, address them using the full name and position of the recipient (i.e. “Allen Smith, Operations Manager”).
- Introduce your company. If the recipient isn’t familiar with your business, provide a succinct but informative summary of what you’re all about, the benefits your product or service provides, and any relevant affiliations.
- Get straight to the point. Business professionals are busy-they need to understand your central message as quickly as possible (preferably within the first paragraph). Don’t be guilty of writing business letters with “cutesy” introductions or lengthy stories.
- Tell them what’s in it for them. Rather than emphasizing why you need the recipient’s investment or support for your business, outline the key advantages he or she can expect to enjoy as a result of partnering or doing business with you.
- Remember to provide your name and contact information when writing business letters to make it easy for the recipient to get in touch. Give them multiple ways to contact you.
- When you are done with the letter, stop to check the spelling and don’t send it off without proofreading. A failure to proofread and find little mistakes like: “I enjoyed meeting you staff” instead of “I enjoyed meeting your staff”, communicates the idea that you are sloppy or don’t care to spend the time to do things right. If you can’t write without mistakes why should your customer or vendor think you’ll take the time to work well with them?
Writing business letters well takes time and commitment. Take the time to learn writing skills. Take the time, when actually writing a letter to do your best. Remember, whatever and however you write is a direct reflection on you and your business. Make a good impression and communicate your message well.
by Steven Schlagel – June 10, 2009