Letter Writing is Not Dead

[tweetmeme]I’m constantly surprised that a post I wrote almost a year ago entitled:  “Is Letter Writing Dead?” is consistently at the top of key words that bring people to my blog.

I received a letter today (OK, a direct mail piece) from L.L. Bean asking if I would like to register to receive emails from them with product information and special deals.  Now I believe that the company has my email address because I’ve ordered from them online and received a receipt online.

I think they sent a letter because it was more likely to catch my attention – which it obviously did because I opened it.  Much as we complain about the junk mail we receive, there sure is a lot less of it than the barrage of emails that we get every day.

It’s surprising how many people are searching for variations on “letter.”  For the fun it of, I went into Google AdWords to check out searches with that word.  In the past month, the simple term “business letter” was searched 1 million times tied with “example letter” and “reference letter.”  The “thank you letter” was close behind with 823,000.  That warms my heart to think that people are still writing thank you letters as discussed by my good friend Andrea Nierenberg in a blog she wrote for me entitled “Thank You Notes Are Not Only a Courtesy, They Can Lead to New Business.”

Younger people aren’t even reading email as they turn to Facebook to communicate with friends or pop them an instant message on their smart phones.  Wouldn’t it be a hoot to learn that a vendor might have a better chance of getting their attention with an old-fashioned letter?  I love the idea.  Long live letter writing!

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  1. Let’s hope those numbers don’t represent ignorance Jeannette. It’s great that people would want to write letters, but somewhat disheartening that they would have to run searches to figure out how. What ARE our schools teaching anyways?

  2. Jeannette, I certainly hope they’re still teaching letter writing in school but sometimes I wonder if they are. These days teachers must have their hands full just teaching proper grammar – what with all the keyboard shortcuts used on social networking sites.

    My daughter has been on a serious job hunt recently and it’s amazing the number of potential employees that will only accept emailed letters and resumes. A large number of them don’t even want documents attached. They want everything copied and pasted into a form. It’s sad in a way.

  3. Jeannette,

    Great post. We are big in our family on sending thank you notes (you may have received one recently).

    It is become such an oddity that it really stands out when someone receives a thank you note.

    So…keep blogging on this topic. I would recommend that you post a series of samples of thank you letters for business. Many people don’t know what to even say in one!