Most of us prefer to send an email or a text message to someone we want to contact. Isn’t that right? However, knowing how to address a letter is still extremely important even in the modern times we live in today. Letters are still used to communicate formally or informally. For example, businesses communicate via letters & someone who is applying for a job will write a job letter to communicate with the employer. Typically, employers get the first impression from your job application attached to a cover letter. So knowing how to address a letter can do wonders!
Without further ado, here’s a sample to make it simple for you:
Sender’s Company Name,
Sender’s Street Address,
Sender’s City/State & Postal Code,
Sender’s Phone Number or Email
Recipient’s Company Name,
Recipient’s Street Address,
Recipient’s City/State & Postal Code,
Recipient’s Phone Number or Email
Introduction: You start by briefly explaining why you’re writing the letter.
Main Body: In this paragraph, you will further explain the purpose of the letter. It doesn’t necessarily have to be in a single paragraph. You could divide your context into two or three paragraphs.
Conclusion: The closing paragraph will include what you hope from the recipient. It can consist of a call for action.
What to add when addressing a formal letter?
Like we mentioned, if you’re sending a job application it is necessary to create a good first impression & stand out in the crowd. Following is a guideline for you to address a formal letter accurately.
When you’re sending a letter to someone you don’t know, it is important for you to mention your name, address, phone number, or email. In the sample above, you can skip the “sender’s company” if you don’t have one. However, if you do, you must write that & your job title as well. Here’s the arrangement you must stick to:
- Full Name
- Company Name (Optional)
- Street Address
- City/Town, State, & Postal Code: The state can be abbreviated.
- Phone or Email
The sender’s information must be written on the top left corner. In case your recipient lives in another country, add the country’s name in the fourth line.
Leaving a line after writing your details, mention the date. It should be aligned to the left. Here’s how you will write the date: April 21, 2021.
The receiver’s details will be aligned to the left margin as well. They will follow the same format as the sender’s information. Do not mistakenly write your details! Knowing the receiver’s company name or job title is necessary as it creates the impression that you did your research on the person.
Here’s a simple pattern to pen down letter recipient’s information you can follow:
Mr. Mathew Perry,
Customer Service Representative,
Harvard Galore, Inc.,
346 Wilson Street,
Miami, Florida 33111
Leaving a line once the receiver’s details are mentioned, move to the greetings. The greetings heavily depend on if you know the receiver. As “Dear” is utilized the majority of times, you could go with that. You must add a comma or a colon at the end of the salutation.
Salutation is written as, “Dear Mr. Perry,” or “Dear Mr. Perry:”
In case you do not know the sex of the recipient you can use, “Dear Sir or Madam:”
In case you know you’re writing to a female & you’re not aware if she’s married or not, you should use Ms. When you’re aware of the recipient’s titles you must address them.
Who to Contact?
You saw a job ad & you want to apply for it. However, you don’t have the contact of the person you’re supposed to write to… So what do you do? You research the company or the person you need to get in contact with.
Even though the receiver’s name isn’t necessary, it still creates a good impression of you in front of the employer. Here’s how you can find out:
- The internet is your best friend! If you saw the job ad in the newspaper or even on social media, you look up the company online & straight up find all the information you’re looking for on the company’s website. Contact information is usually in the “About us” section.
- If you’re unable to find the company’s website or social media page, ask around. Your friends or family might know about it.
- Typically, companies have their contact number listed on Google. So you if you can get direct access, just call them up & inquire about the contact information.