When Should You Use “To The Attention Of” In A Business Letter?

Business Letter

The only timer you are allowed to use to the attention of in a letter is when you are using it to salute a particular person in the letter. This is what we mean here, it is only allowed in a business letter when the writer doesn’t know the exact name of who he or she is writing to. It is wrong to use this phrase and then write the person’s name after the phrase because sometimes it sends the message that you are disrespecting the person. As a matter of fact, this isn’t something that is advisable, just find out the person’s name and don’t take out the phrase “to the attention of”. 

Writing business letters is something that every successful man or woman has done or will do later in the future. To be precise, we could say only successful businesses men or women will write business letters.

A secret you need to know about business letters is that most of these letters or words used in the letter are not useful, most times just going straight to the point and adding things you don’t need at the bottom might be a good idea. 

They are not totally useless but some people read what they want and then throw out the remaining when they get a letter. Also, not all letters bring back good results, no matter how good it is, don’t be disappointed, it just happens. The major thing is to make sure you craft your letter in the best possible way you can. 

Just so you know, there are letters filled with content that would surely produce good results for you, it is a skill that some people have, they can write letters that would surely bring a positive outcome for you. You can write a business letter, you just have to believe that you can, just let it flow, people who write letters that produce good results don’t go through hell, it isn’t a difficult thing to do.

This is something everyone who is involved in any business can easily do, learning how to write a productive business letter is something that can be done in a matter of days and it doesn’t take time to master too. 

Business Letter Overview 

Business Letter Overview 

As you should know, there are several kinds of business letters available, and all of them are named after the purpose at which it is written for. What this means is that when you write a letter of appreciation to a person in business with you, it is called an appreciation letter. The name defines exactly what it is. 

When writing a letter, the best thing you can do for yourself is to make sure that you give the reader points that will let him or her know exactly why you are writing the letter. The best writers send out letters that help their readers to understand exactly what they are saying in their letters. The secret to this is reducing the information in the letter so it isn’t too much for the reader.

Here is another thing you should know about business letters that have made people call themselves professionals in business writing. You have to ensure that your letter is being sent to one person in the company. What we are saying, in essence, is that before including the company’s name, make sure you direct the letter first to someone who works or has an office inside the company. With this tip, you would get a possible reply. Sometimes you might not know the name of the person this letter is supposed to be directed to, that is when the phrase “to the attention of” comes in place. It is best to call and find out the person’s name. 

After going through the process of getting the reader’s name, the next thing is to write out the contents and then you can begin drafting out your letter. Let us give you some pointers. This is a business letter, you have to make sure you give the impression that you are a business-minded person and you know what you are talking about. 

Make sure you are friendly because most times when you write a business letter, it is for a business proposal that would help you. Now, the best thing to do is to imagine if you were in a meeting with the person and you wanted to talk to him or her about the business proposal. You have to write in a tone at which you would use to speak normally. 

You have to ensure that you use the right pronouns and try to scrutinize your letter for grammatical errors because a business letter is a very important and serious letter. The reader of your letter would only judge from what he or she sees in the letter. Remember that the letter is the only thing that your reader has to judge you with, he or she hasn’t seen or heard you speak, the letter is what you have as an edge on the other side. 

Go through everything you have written, your grammar, sentence, and spellings too. 

Written words can send a message just like spoken words, just know that the written words send the impressions that you want them to. When you send a letter, the reader has more reasons to reject you because he or she can keep it as a history than when you come and present it. 

A Table Showing Different Sections Of A Business Letter

SectionsHow To Use It
Reader information The upper left of your letter is where you have to write some information about the proposed reader, starting with his or her name
DateA date is required for any formal escapade, follow the progression by starting with the month, day, and year
Your information After the date which takes up one line is where you put down your information, your information should be the exact information you have of your reader.
Opening salutationsA salutation, this is what you regard the reader as everyone used Dear when writing a letter, whatever follows next is the title of the reader.
BodyThis is easy, but it holds the whole purpose of the letter so you have to focus more here, you have at least three paragraphs in this section. 
Closing salutationsAfter the whole purpose and aim of the letter, you salute the person again and then move into the next section. 
Your signatureAll you do here is a sign and write down your full name. 


Is The Phrase “To The Attention Of” Correct?

Yes it is, but it isn’t necessary, it is better to replace this phrase because it might show a sign of disrespect.

How Is The Phrase Used In A Letter?

It is only used for the reader when the reader’s name is unknown. 


Just like we have said before, it isn’t professional to add the phrase “ to the attention of” in a letter, it sends out a very bad signal to the reader and it shows just how unprofessional you are and then you might lose an opportunity to even speak with the proposed reader. 

References: 1 https://emilypost.com/advice/effective-business-letters
References: 2 https://forum.wordreference.com/threads/attn-or-fao-for-the-attention-of-in-business-letter.2851262/

Last Updated on August 6, 2022 by Ana S. Sutterfield

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