Tuesday, July 26, 2011

How to Close E-mails and Letters Creatively

Looking for creative suggestions on how to end a letter? Read on for a list of letter closings and proper goodbyes.

Beyond the overused "sincerely," there are many ways to sign off a letter or e-mail. When writers choose letter closings, the endings can offer insight into how readers should follow up. "Write soon" welcomes the reader to respond, while the more reserved "Wishing you the best" may be saved for a difficult sympathy card.

List of Proper Business Letter Closings

Be it for marketing letters, cover letters or professional e-mails, writers can use a great variety of business letter closings to sign off a work-related document. Denote a friendly-but-business-like tone with the letter closing "Kind regards," or keep things ultra sharp by ending an important letter with "Confidently yours."
  • Best regards/wishes
  • Confidently yours
  • Kind regards/wishes
  • Many thanks
  • Respectfully yours
  • Warm regards
  • With anticipation
  • Yours respectfully/sincerely/truly
List of Friendly Goodbyes

Whether it's for the family holiday card, a letter wishing better health, or a thank you note, choosing the right letter closings for friends is a fine and fun art. Here are some suggestions that denote the warmth of friendship, but still hold a respectful and well-wishing air:
  • Cheerful greetings to all
  • Hugs
  • Kind thoughts
  • Take care
  • Wishing you the best
  • Write soon
  • Your friend
  • Yours in friendship
List of Online Goodbyes Used to Sign off an E-mail

Writers have more flexibility in the endings they use for e-mails than in written letters. To add a little more life to personal e-mail closings, consider signing off with one of these e-mail salutations:
  • Be good/well
  • Cheers
  • I'm out
  • More to come
  • Smiles
  • Take care
  • Take it easy
  • Until next time
Quote Funny and Famous Closings

From Obi-Wan Kenobi's classic line from Star Wars "May the force be with you" and the hockey-themed "Keep your stick on the ice," television, music and movies have given us some of the most popular and creative letter closings.

Here are some letter closings and e-mail salutations that will be familiar to most:
  • All you need is love
  • Happy trails to you
  • Hasta la vista, baby
  • Keep your stick on the ice
  • Live long and prosper
  • May the force be with you
  • Over and out
  • Over to you
  • Peace, love, and unity
  • Start the engines
  • Stay tuned
  • To be continued...
  • Yabba dabba do
Loving Endings for Valentine's Day

Signing off a Valentine's Day card or a love letter remains a careful operation. A valentine likely won't appreciate the ending "Your friend" or a professional "Best regards." So to ensure a happy Valentine's Day, be sure to add a loving goodbye with lots of personal thought:
  • Lots of love
  • Love always/eternally/forever
  • Much love
  • Thinking sweet thoughts of you
  • Yours
Friendly Goodbyes in Other Languages

Adding a letter closing in another language can be a fun way to end a written note or e-mail. From French goodbyes to Spanish farewells, here are some international ways to sign off a written note:
  • Adieu
  • Adios amigo (use "amiga" for a female letter recipient or "amigos" for a family or group)
  • Aloha
  • Au revoir
  • Ciao
  • Namaste
Selecting the Right Letter Closings and E-mail Sign-offs

Whichever letter closings or e-mail endings writers use, be sure to think about the recipients and how they will interpret each goodbye. When in doubt, err on the side of more formal letter closings and e-mail endings rather than risk offending readers with casual or inappropriate sign offs.