Writing a Letter or Email during the Coronavirus Pandemic
In chapter 11: Writing for Public Relations, we learn that there are several ways to communicate that are considered strategic. Writing for PR does not only incorporate press releases. They also include writing letters, emails, oral presentations, slide presentations, statements, speeches, newsletters, pamphlets and brochures, magazines, annual reports, websites, etc. Companies have to communicate internally and externally.
In this time of crisis as we fight the Coronavirus COVID-19, we find that strategic effective communication is essential. We have all been receiving updates from the university that are carefully written to contain important information that is imperative for everyone to understand how we are going to operate, updates, and procedures. These communications are carefully written. The information, length, and mode of delivery have been carefully planned and organized.
This assignment is designed to help you think about how these types of communication are composed and disseminated. Taking into consideration what they include, what they do not include, how long are they, what is the purpose, how are they organized, etc. To prepare for this assignment it is imperative that you read chapter 11. Make sure you pay close attention to sections 11.6: Letters and 11.7: E-mails.
There is an example of a letter in your textbook on page 203. You can use the example of the emails you have been getting from the university also.
Directions: You are to write a letter or an email to a group or a particular individual discussing some aspect dealing with the Coronavirus.
Your letter or email can be written to an international, national, local, or in your immediate community person, group, or entity. Think carefully about what you want to communicate to them, who you address in your communication is your choice. You can write to a government official, FIU students, young adults, parents, pet owners, your condo association board, grieving families, etc. You can write your letter or email to them as a concerned citizen or as a member of a particular organization or group. It can even be to the people in your neighborhood or apartment complex. Note: This is NOT just a friendly letter or a rant about something, it should have a focus and a purpose!
Your letter or email MUST contain:
A focus and a purpose.
What do you want them to know? Why is it important for them to know this information? What do you want them to do with this information?
Some data (facts, figures, surveys, etc.). Do not include graphs or images. Make sure you attribute your website information/quotes correctly (check AP Stylebook for specifics).
Indirect and direct quotes. (DO NOT interview anyone who you have not been quarantined with). You can get quotes from social media (Instagram, Facebook, Linked In, etc. You can interview family members or friends via phone or instant messenger, Zoom (a free service to everyone), Skype, FaceTime, E-mail, etc.
Check page 203 of your textbook (Section 11.6) for an example of what your letter should look like. Follow these guidelines discussed in your text:
Donâ€t be Obsequious
Donâ€t be Overly Complimentary
Donâ€t Try to be Too Funny
Donâ€t refer to personal characteristics, habits, or feelings of the reader
Use personal pronouns
Avoid Impersonal constructions
Avoid the Passive Voice
Avoid Using Technical Language
Your letter or email should follow the correct format.
It should contain complete contact information for the receiver.
A complete signature (name and title or affiliation) and contact information for you, the sender.
Be single-spaced, 12 pts. Time Roman and fit on ONE page!
Must follow grammar and AP Style.
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