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Persuasive Letter Assignment

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    In one page, write a persuasive letter to an actual company of your choice about donating funds to an actual charitable organization. You will need to research the company to see if it donates to charities and what kinds of charities the company would be most interested in. You might need to make a phone call to determine who at the company makes decisions regarding donations. You will also need to research the charitable organization to find out what it does, how it uses donations, the amount of money it might need, what kinds of services might be needed, and how to donate.

    If you wish, you could make this a real-world situation, but please do not actually send the letter out yet. A letter is often your first and perhaps only chance to make a good impression, so make every word count. You will need to fully introduce and describe your charity and its mission–even if you are using a charity that is well known. When asking for a monetary donation, be specific about the amount needed, why it is needed, and when it is needed.

    If you are asking for services, you will need to explain in detail what kinds of services are being requested and when they will be needed. If an event is planned, you need to describe the event fully–who, what, when where, why, etc. You might also describe any possible benefits to the company that might accrue from its donation. In other words, provide all the necessary details for your business executive to decide whether or not to donate.

    Additionally, be sure to use a professional style and tone in your writing. Your text should flow easily, with effective, transitional phrases or sentences leading from one topic to another. Your paragraphs should be short and readable, and they should stick to one topic only. Read it out loud and have someone else read it to you and note where changes need to be made. Remember, this is a one-page letter. The very format of the letter might limit the kinds and amounts of donations you can request.

    You will need to be very concise in order to fit all the information you need to include into a single page. You will also need to persuade the company about your cause without demeaning the people your charity seeks to help and without being overly emotional. In business writing, it is very important to clearly state your purpose at the front of a document in a way that catches the reader’s interest (without being corny), and then quickly but thoroughly provide more description and details.

    Organization: Your letter has three basic sections (other than the addresses, salutation, and close). Your first paragraph should introduce the reason you are writing and catch the reader’s interest. The second (and maybe third) paragraph should explain more about your request and give specifics. The closing paragraph thanks the company for its possible donation and finishes with contact information. Your letter should contain (in this order):

    $ Your name and title, above charity’s name and address $ Date
    $ Name, title, and address of recipient
    $ Salutation
    $ Introductory paragraph
    $ Body of text
    $ Conclusion (final paragraph)
    $ Complimentary close
    $ Signature and typed name

    Format: This means 1″ margins all around and 12 pt. Times New Roman font. Use full-block format—everything begins on left margin).

    Grading: You will be graded on the format of your letter, your choices of charitable organization and potential donor, whether you requested appropriate amounts or services, whether you provided complete information in the letter, the organization of the letter, the tone and professionalism of your writing, your persuasive techniques, and your grammar and punctuation.

    This essay was written by a fellow student. You may use it as a guide or sample for writing your own paper, but remember to cite it correctly. Don’t submit it as your own as it will be considered plagiarism.

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