Strike the Right Tone: Make the purpose of your letter clear through simple and targeted language, keeping the opening paragraph brief. You can start with, “I am writing in reference to…” and from there, communicate only what you need to say. The subsequent paragraphs should include information that gives your reader a full understanding of your objective(s) but avoid meandering sentences and needlessly long words. Again, keep it concise to sustain their attention.
Formal communication is on the wane in modern life, but there are still times when it's the only correct way to reinforce a connection or convey information. If you're applying for a job, looking for a recommendation, or expanding your network, err on the side of formality. Don't let the slightly archaic feel of a formal business letter tempt you into using flowery, outdated language.