Human beings require exchanging information with each other by means of writing different letters as their demands are increasing with the rapid growth of civilization. This means letters may be of various types depending on diversified human requirements. The following diagram shows the main letter types:
Types of Letter
- Formal Letter: The letter that is written by maintaining officially recognized rules, regulations, and formalities is called formal letter. It is also referred to as a “professional letter.” This type of letter is generally written for institutional or business purposes. Examples of such letters are reference letters, letters of resignation, letters of recommendation, and absence request letter among others.
- Business letter or Commercial Letter: The letter that is written among the businessmen for exchanging their business related information is known as business letter or commercial letter. Such letters include sales letter, follow-up letter, and complaint letter among many other types of business letters.
- Official letter: The letter that is written for conveying the official information such as rules, regulations, actions and procedure to other officers or organizations is known as official letter. This type of letter is written by government, semi government or private organizations; educational or social institutions; or even by individuals to other bodies. In writing this letter, officially recognized structure, rules and procedures are strictly followed. Such forms of letters are written within the organization structure to relay messages between members. It includes different types of business letters such as employee letters, appreciation letters, client welcome letters, follow-up letters, promotion letter, apology letter, sales letter and even termination letter.
- Demi-Official Letter: When an official letter contains some personal information it is known as demi-official letter. It is a combo of formal letters and informal letters, also known as “semi-formal letter.” This letter is generally written by compiling both official and some personal messages. In writing this letter officially recognized rules, procedures and structures are not followed. Though this letter includes personal information, official information gets the prime focus. People holding the same position normally exchange this type of letter and the receiver is addressed by name.
- Social Letter: The letter that is written for any social purpose or social interest is known as social letter. This letter is somewhat similar to personal letter. Invitation letter, congratulation letter, thanksgiving letter, acknowledgment letter, obituary letter etc. are examples of social letter.
- Personal Letter: The letter that is written for exchanging personal or family affairs is known as personal letter. This letter contains messages like personal desires, feelings love affection etc. and are generally exchanged among the family members, relatives, friends, lovers, teachers and students etc. personal letter follows no structure or prescribed rule and procedure. It is normally drafted by using the sweetness of writer’s heart for expressing their secret thoughts, feelings or intentions. Condolence letter, birthday letter, and romantic letter are examples of personal letters.
At last, it can be said that through the above-stated letters any concerned party can convey his/her commercial or personal or social matters to others. The body of letter contains contents that determine the intent of the letter writers and determine the nature of the original letter delivered.
It is important to build the art of letter writing for personal and business purposes. There are different forms of letter depending on the predefined intent of the letter authors and message intended to be conveyed.