Writing for Effect

Writing for Effect


Importance of Effect

• The first concern is to maintain clarity in writing – especially for internal communication.

• The written communication involving the external people should focus both on clarity and goodwill effect.

• Goodwill effect contributes to the development of the favorable image of the company.

Conversational Style

Using conversational style helps provide goodwill effect.

Stiff and Dull

  • Enclosed herewith is the brochure about which you make enquiry.
  • I shall be most pleased to avail myself of your kind suggestion when and if prices decline.


  • Enclosed is the brochure you asked about.
  • I will gladly follow your suggestion if the price falls.

Cutting Out “Rubber Stamps”

Rubber stamps are expressions used every time a certain type of situation occurs.

Common Examples:

  • Last but not least
  • Leave no stone unturned
  • As good as gold relics

Other Examples:

  • This is to inform you that…
  • In accordance with your instructions…


“You-Viewpoint” is a technique for creating goodwill message that focuses on the reader’s interests and concerns.

You-Viewpoint can be applied in case of:

  • Presenting good news
  • Approving a request of some party (i.e. customer)
  • Developing advertising messages
  • Presenting bad news

Examples: You-Viewpoint


  • We sell this cutlery set for the low price of Taka 250 each and suggest a retail price of Taka 310.
  • We have received your report of May 1.


  • You can reap a Taka 60 profit on each cutlery set you sell at Taka 310.
  • Thank you for your report of May 1.



Effects of Words

  • Positive words are appropriate for achieving message goals.
  • Positive words create goodwill atmosphere that a sender usually seeks.
  • Negative words create reader’s resistance as these go against reader’s intention and/or will.
  • Strongly negative words such as mistake, problem, refuse; etc create unpleasant effects.

Examples: Word Choice


  • We regret to inform you that we must deny your request for credit
  • Smoking is not permitted anywhere except in the lobby


  • For the time being, we can serve you on a cash basis only
  • Smoking is permitted in the lobby only.


“Courtesy” is a technique that is used to build and maintain goodwill. In this case, a sender treats people with respect and friendly human concern.

The techniques can be applied:

  • Focusing or customizing your message for specific reader.
  • Refraining from preaching (i.e. you must, you should)
  • Doing more than is expected

Courtesy (Continued)

  • Avoiding anger.


  • I can not understand your negligence.
  • We will not tolerate this condition.
  • We have no intention of permitting this condition to continue.
  • Being Sincere.

Risks involved:

  • Over-doing goodwill techniques
  • Exaggerating the positives.

Courtesy (Continued)

  • Avoid preaching.


  • You must take advantage of savings like this if you are to be successful.
  • You should use this product according to the guidelines as in indicated in the manual.

Courtesy (Continued)

  • Doing more than expected.
  • Providing explanation to a request which has been denied.
  • Providing a answer that justifies a decision whether it be positive, or negative.
  • Offering possible alternative course of actions.
  • Providing suggestions about using the product.
  • Congratulating, or wishing good luck.

Role of Emphasis

Four techniques of emphasis:

  • Emphasis by Position – The starting and ending part of a writing unit carry more emphasis than the center.
  • Space and Emphasis – The more is said about something, the more emphasis is given to it.
  • Sentence structure and Emphasis – Place more important information in a short, simple sentence.
  • Mechanical means and Emphasis – Using quotation marks, italics, bold typeface; etc.


The relationships among the parts of the message, paragraph, and sentence must be maintained that build a logical and consistent structure.

  • Arranging information in a logical order by putting related issues together.
  • Using key words.
  • Using pronouns to refer back to earlier facts.
  • Using transitional expressions (i.e. in contrast).