Persuasive Letter is a letter written to persuade an organisation/s or individual/s towards accepting the writer’s (sender’s) issue, interest or perspective. It can be written to any type of organisation i.e. school, bank, college, NGO, municipality etc. The individuals can be a director, CEO, government official etc.
Persuasive Letter is a letter written to persuade an organisation/s or individual/s towards accepting the writer’s (sender’s) issue, interest or perspective. It can be written to any type of organisation i.e. school, bank, college, NGO, municipality etc. The individuals can be a director, CEO, government official etc. The motive of the persuasion letter is to ‘Get your work done’ in layman terms.
The persuasion can be related to any matter, it can be:
A request or any other matter which requires convincing
Taking that into note, persuasion letter is a broad term inclusive of Cover Letter, Complaint Letter, Petition Letter, Request Letter, and Sales Letter. This is because in all of the above mentioned there is moderate to maximum amount of persuasion on part of the sender.
Depending upon the region where you live a Complaint Letter or a Sales Letter may be an interchangeable name for a Persuasive letter. Persuasion letter comes under formal letter type and follows certain formats like Full Block Style, Semi-Block Style, Modified Block Style and Modified Semi-Block Style. As mentioned earlier about the formal nature of letters of persuasion, you can include certain informal elements depending upon the need. While a persuasive letter may or may not be successful in its objective, it does raise awareness about the matter addressed. And it can act as a source of inspiration for others when you are addressing certain important social issues.
How to Write a Persuasive Letter
Writing a persuasive letter is not hard as it is a formal letter. Formal letters follow some few basics which are provided in the format, templates and examples. Once you become familiar with these it will become even easier for you to write a persuasion letter. It is the content which will be different owing to the varied recipients. For example a persuasive letter sent to a principal will have a different content than a persuasive claims letter.
Persuasive Letter Format
Persuasive Letter Format 1
Persuasive Letter Format 2
Persuasive Letter Writing Tips
Persuasive Letter Writing Tips
Before starting your persuasion letter, there are certain things you should keep in mind. These points have been mentioned below:
Passion for Persuasion – Are you really sure about your persuasion? Is your argument valid and/or genuine? Are you willing to conduct a research (big or small)? These questions are meant to evaluate your attitude. Unless and until you don’t have a heart for it, it will not come across the reader in the way you anticipate. Neither you will be able to strive for your opinion. So ensure your emotions and your firm about the matter.
Outline and Organise – The actual writing of the letter should not begin unless you have outlined your criteria and organised the relevant matter. This is the preparatory material which you will utilise later on. For now, keep in mind the recipient and how can you persuade him/her in the best possible manner. To outline your matter collect any supporting material which vouches your persuasion. This matter can be news clippings, short video, images, case hearings etc.
Some points to consider while outlining and organising:
Get an in-depth understanding of your persuasion. Do you know everything about it? Are you clear enough to justify your conviction?
Do you have enough supporting material to influence the recipient?
Know the recipient, what sort of a personality is he/she? What are his likes and dislikes? Any other information is also helpful. This is important because you have to influence and convince the recipient to get a response in your favour.
Research your Persuasion – Know each and everything about the subject of your persuasion. For this you can collect information from information centres, journals, internet, libraries, museums, newspapers, statistics and any other helpful matter. There are two benefits of research – One, you have enough information for yourself and Second, you have enough information to support and/or address your concerns/views.
Pros and Cons – To become substantial, your views should be tested by figuring out the advantages and disadvantages of your persuasion. This will give you a better understanding and a better way to put forth your case. Like all things in life, your views will have pros and cons. Work these out and put it in writing. Make two columns, label them + or – or whichever you prefer. Fill both the columns considering all the possibilities. Place the strongest one’s on the top and weakest ones at the bottom. The points which are in your favour will be used to make your views strong and worth consideration. They also form the basis for a solution to a mentioned problem. The negative aspects of your views are to be nullified by strong arguments so that they become diminutive or insignificant.
Get familiar with the Format – For those who are new to persuasive letters or want to revise their knowledge of these, you can go through the formats, templates and examples provided in related sections of this webpage. Similarly, you can also go through Cover Letters, Complaint Letters, Petition Letters, Request Letters and Sales Letters provided for your convenience in the website. There is always something that will enhance your letter writing skills.
How to Start a Persuasive Letter
Being a formal letter, a persuasive letter follows the format commonly seen in other types of formal letters such as a business letter, cover letter etc.
Letterhead / Senders Name & Address
Recipient’s Name (specific official or person)
Reference or Subject (as required)
Salutation – Dear Sir / Madam / Mr. / Ms., (comma) OR : (colon)
Introduce yourself, mention the reason for writing etc.
The above given are some of the elements for starting persuasive letter but that is not all to persuasive letter writing. There are other essential factors to be considered before your letter is ready to be posted. Please go through these to acquaint yourself through the points mentioned below.
Drafting – Drafting allows you to improve and improvise your letter. You have the option of rejecting or accepting the material you have written without regretting it. The outline of the letter comes in use here and so does the material which you have organised. Use these to write the letter to full effect. Don’t worry about grammatical mistakes, punctuation, spelling, sentence structure or word limit. If you are not sure of one particular format, create multiple ones and see which the best is.
Use AIDA – As applicable in sales letter, AIDA formula can also be utilised here. It is suitable because a sales letter is also a type of persuasive letter. Similarly, Complaint Letter, Petition Letter, Request Letter have the element of persuasion.
Attention – Using a headline is most appropriate in sales letter. In other forms i.e. – Cover Letter, Complaint Letter, Petition Letter and Request Letter it is not advised that you do so unless it is an accepted practice in the region you live. To get attention in other forms you can post a question but not for getting an answer but to put emphasis on your views.
Interest – Provide startling facts or statistics, these will generate interest in your argument. Use an anecdote to illustrate your point; this too, will generate interest. Providing opposing point of views and then nullifying them with yours, becomes an attraction point too.
Desire – Depict real life and practical examples towards your persuasion. How is your point of view applicable in real life? The answer to this question appeals to the recipient as it can be witnessed in real life. Providing supporting material also creates a desire in the recipients mind.
Action – The first three features are meant to lead to a final call for action. To further strengthen your call use some worst case scenarios with evidence to initiate an action. You can infuse action by offering some benefits applicable to all or those who take timely action.
For detailed information on AIDA, refer to – Sales Letter. The below given tips also have the elements of AIDA, you can use them as per your say.
Emphasising the Figures – Statistics, figures of your persuasion establish a faith in your say. They are also evidences, adding authenticity towards your argument. Use polls and public opinion towards this affect. Elongate the statement to get the elongated effect. For example, it could have been ‘4 thefts take place everyday’ but you can use wordings like ‘About four thefts take place in a single day’. You can use quotes to highlight these or make them bold.
Write in Present Tense – Writing in the present tense makes the issue pertinent. It shows that the matter is urgent and requires prompt action. Writing in the past tense makes the statement stale and writing in future tense can lead to delayed decisions.
Be Emphatic – Emphatic here means to assume that the reader will response in positive tone. This emphatic strategy garners positivity in your writing. Your language and sentences will start having an emphatic tone, convincing the reader in your favour.
Emotional Quotient – Certain words and phrases appeal to the heart and mind. Use appropriate phrases and ‘One liner’s’ to have an emotional effect on the reader. Two three words or two three sentences can have a desired effect even if the material is not up to the mark. Famous sayings have certain emotions attached to them and you never know when you may strike the right cord? You can also use images to put an emotional effect in your letter. But don’t overdo it.
Add Credibility – Credibility is added through the figures and facts you include in your letter. Nonetheless, you can add some more credibility through testimonials of certain esteemed authorities and/or certain valued individuals. You can include certain signatures of people who are affected or who support your cause. Credibility is also put into effect with your writing and the presentation of most important information in the beginning to least important in the end or vice versa. Short paragraphs in the form of bullet lists show your eager approach/effort towards the supporting cause.
Typed or Handwritten – Depending upon the need you can either type your letter or use your own handwriting. In most cases computer printed letter is used as different types of handwriting may not be legible to the reader.
Second Opinion – Ask friends or family members to read your letter and give you feedback. Their input will can turn out to be more valuable than you expected as ‘Different minds think differently’.
Proofreading and Revising – Sum up your letter. Check your facts and figures. Double check the addresses, appropriate salutations and sign offs at the end. Remove grammatical errors and poor sentences. Shorten unnecessary information and ensure call to action has been included at the end of the letter. Insert any information which may have been left out.
Attach essential Documents – To add extra impact always enclose important documents like agreements, emails received, earlier complaint letters, receipts, warranty etc. Keep original copies of letters, faxes, e-mails, and related documents with you.
Timely Persuasion, Timely Response – No matter what your concern is? ensure a prompt delivery to get a timely response. Holidays, emergencies etc. can become hurdles for your letter so make sure that you have done your job in time.
Persuasive Letter Template 1
__________Organisation Letter Head
__________ Your Name
__________ Your Title
__________ Your Address
__________ Your Contact
__ ____ 20__ (Date)
_________ Addressee’s Name
_________ Addressee’s Title
________________ (Addressee’s Address)
_____________Ref / Sub
This is to inform you that the __________ purchased by us ______ ago do not work properly. Most of them ____________ and some of them ___________.
As per the warranty and replacement policy we are entitled to have replacement within __year of the purchase without any extra cost, if and when any problem occurs. We would have suffered a major loss if we didn’t have some spare__________. Fortunately we did have them but they required some fine tuning. However, we are not charging anything for the time and effort required to do so.
But we do need the replacements ASAP. And that is what the purpose of this letter is. You can even pay for the replacements only by cheque or online transfer. I am also requesting reimbursement for the shipping charges for returning the original order to you.
I have enclosed copies of purchase order, warranty and shipping charges for your reference.
If you have any questions, comments, or concerns, please do not hesitate to call me or e-mail me at ________.
I expect we can settle this matter in a timely and cooperative manner.
__________ Your Signature
Encl: Copy of Purchase Invoice
Copies of Warranty Documents
Copy of Shipping Charges