How to Write a Business Memo

Written by Linda Elizabeth Alexander

Continued from page 1

After statingrepparttar problem, indicaterepparttar 108172 purpose clearly: Are you announcing a meeting, welcoming a new employee, or asking for input on adopting a new policy about lunch hour length?

Discussion Segment

Inrepparttar 108173 discussion segment, give details aboutrepparttar 108174 problem, Don't ramble on incessantly, but do give enough information for decision makers to resolverepparttar 108175 problem. Describerepparttar 108176 task or assignment with details that support your opening paragraph (problem).

Closing Segment Afterrepparttar 108177 reader has absorbed all of your information, close with a courteous ending that states what action you want your reader to take. Should they hand email their reports rather than hand in hard copies? Attend a meeting? Chip in for someone's birthday cake? A simple statement like, "Thank you for rinsingrepparttar 108178 coffeepot after pouring repparttar 108179 last cup" is polite and clearly states what action to take.

Traditionally memos aren't signed. However, it is becoming more common for memos to closerepparttar 108180 way letters do, with a typed signature under a handwritten signature. Follow your company's example for this.

Except for memos that are essentially informal reports or instructional documents, makerepparttar 108181 memo no more than one page long. In a memo, less is more.

Summary Segment If your memo is longer than a page, you may want to include a separate summary segment. This part provides a brief statement ofrepparttar 108182 recommendations you have reached. These will help your reader understandrepparttar 108183 key points ofrepparttar 108184 memo immediately.

To further clarify your meaning, keep these formatting ideas in mind:

Headings helprepparttar 108185 reader skim for sections ofrepparttar 108186 document.

Numbered and bulleted lists make information easy to scan. Be careful to make lists parallel in grammatical form.

Font sizes, underlining, bolding, and italicizing make headings and important information stand out.

As in all technical and business communications, long paragraphs of dense text make reading more difficult. Therefore, keep your paragraphs short and torepparttar 108187 point.

Now that you know how to write a proper memo, you can be sure that your readers will understand your intentions.

Linda Elizabeth Alexander writes marketing copy for nonprofits and other businesses. Visit her website TODAY for other informative business writing articles.

Pumping Up The Emotional Side Of Gizmos, Widgets And Powdered Eggs.

Written by Walter Burek

Continued from page 1

Start From The Other End. All advertising must start with a strategy. But, too often, we build our strategies onrepparttar what. With too little consideration of potential emotional appeals. And too much focus onrepparttar 108171 specific product differences and benefits, no matter how small these differences might be. We get locked into saying something instead of communicating something. It would be better if we spent more time trying to understand how people might userepparttar 108172 product in their lives. And trying to judge its emotional importance and appeal. Which means that, sometimes, you may want to start atrepparttar 108173 other end. By first coming up with a great attention-getting idea -- that you can then fit intorepparttar 108174 framework ofrepparttar 108175 strategy.

Don't Go Too Far. Don't getrepparttar 108176 wrong idea. The rational appeal of your advertising is important, too. Especially when you have something significant to say. But even when you don't. Becauserepparttar 108177 rational element is what people use to justify their emotional decisions. Nobody will ever say, "I bought their product becauserepparttar 108178 photos in their brochure were beautiful," or "I gave themrepparttar 108179 business becauserepparttar 108180 copy on their Web site gave me a chuckle." Even though stuff like this may have affected them, they still need a rational reason. So, you better give them one.

Rely On Your Own Feelings. If you put anything on paper without emotion, it should be because you're in search of it. You have to start with emotion, if you want to end with it. Remember,repparttar 108181 whole idea here is to share your feelings (andrepparttar 108182 intensity of them) -- about a company and its product or services -- withrepparttar 108183 people onrepparttar 108184 other side of that page or screen. It means forging those feelings intorepparttar 108185 shape of ads, brochures, Web pages, postcards and matchbook covers for all ofrepparttar 108186 rest ofrepparttar 108187 world to feel. And just think about it! Every time a person will reach for a product, it's because you have reached them inside. And given them a feeling for it. Which makes for a pretty good feeling in itself. ----------------------------------------•-------------------------------------- Walter is a professional advertising copywriter who writes, edits and publishes "Words @ Work", a FREE bimonthly newsletter of advice and information about writing that works. To view his award-winning portfolio and to subscribe visit You may also subscribe to Words@Work via e-mail to:


Walter Burek is an award-winning copywriter who learned his craft at some of the finest advertising agencies in the world and has been a writer and Creative Director on some of advertising’s most important accounts.

Currently, he offers freelance copywriting services through his company,

Walter also writes, edits and publishes Words@Work, a free newsletter for marketing communications professionals.

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