Marketing, PR and social media can all help create a buzz when you are launching a new business. But, particularly if you are selling to other businesses, one of the most effective things you can do to attract customers and start getting some business is to write a letter. With a letter, you are speaking directly to the recipient and have a chance to convey your messages clearly.
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This business letter is part of your marketing plan, so plan it in the same way as you would a press release. Think about the people you need to send it to, what they know about your business (which might be nothing) and how they feel about it. Consider what you want them to do after they receive your letter, whether it's to come to a launch event, buy something from you, or simply take your call when you telephone them to follow up. On a practical note, make sure that you have the names and addresses of the people you want to send the letter to.
The letter should be formatted in a standard business style, with your business's name and address at the top. You should also include the date and the address of the person you're writing to. Greet them by name at the beginning of the letter, for example: "Dear Dr Smith" or "Dear Jessica Smith". If you do not know the name of the person to whom you are writing, it's best to leave out a greeting altogether. Don't try a general greeting such as "Dear colleague" or "Dear customer."
Write in a direct, courteous, conversational style when you describe what your company is. Do not include any "business speak" or jargon. A good tip is to imagine that the person you are writing to is standing in front of you. Talk to them, out loud, about your new business, then write down what you said. The letter should not be too long. If it is anything over a page, read through it again and cut any unnecessary words.
Call to action
Finish the letter with a clear "call to action". Invite them to do something, even if it's only to expect a telephone call from you. One of the strongest calls to action is a time-limited special offer, for example: "To celebrate our launch, we're offering 25% off all orders placed by the end of May."
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