How To Write an Appreciation Letter (With Example)

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published July 26, 2021

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

If someone takes time out of their day to help you, it's always nice to express your gratitude and acknowledge their help. There are many ways to do this, but one memorable way is to write an appreciation letter. Knowing how to write a thoughtful appreciation letter can positively impact someone's day by letting them know you're grateful for their help. In this article, we look at what an appreciation letter is, explain how to write one, provide tips for writing one, and share an example appreciation letter to help you write your own.

Related: How to Write a Letter: Format and Examples

What is an appreciation letter?

An appreciation letter is a professional note you can write to express your gratitude. You can send an appreciation letter to someone in your professional or personal life for several reasons, such as thanking them for a gift, advice, or professional connection. You can also thank someone in person, over the phone, or through email, but an appreciation letter is more personal and expresses deeper gratitude.

Related: How To Thank Someone for Their Time

How to write a letter of appreciation

To write your own appreciation letter, follow these steps:

1. Be prompt

Try to send your appreciation letter as soon as you can after the event for which you're thanking the recipient. Sending your letter no later than three days afterwards leaves a good impression on the recipient and shows them your sincerity If you're delayed and miss the three-day window, you can still send your appreciation letter. It's better to thank someone a bit later than not at all.

2. Choose the right format

There are many formats for appreciation letters. You can type one and attach it to an email. You can hand-write one and send it in the mail or deliver it yourself. Or you can even write it on a card and send it with a gift. Choose a format that's appropriate to the occasion and recipient. For example, a handwritten card and gift are more appropriate for a personal connection rather than a prospective employer after an interview.

3. Write a greeting

After you write your contact information and the recipient's, start your letter with a greeting. The greeting you choose sets the tone of the letter, so it's important you pick one that's appropriate for the recipient and event. Refer to business contacts as "Mr." or "Ms." to keep the letter professional. For someone you're close to or have a personal connection with, you can just use their first name.

Related: How To Start a Letter, With Tips and Examples

4. Express the letter's purpose

Aim to write two or three body paragraphs that state the letter's purpose and express your gratitude. The first paragraph should state the reason for your letter, immediately to inform the recipient about why you're writing. For example: "Thank you for taking the time to meet with me on Monday to interview for the ESL teacher position," or "I really appreciate your help on my project last week, especially since you were so busy with your own workload."

5. Be specific

In the second and third body paragraphs, mention specific examples of why you're grateful. Think about details you both discussed previously, or what you enjoyed about the interaction. Including specific details makes the letter more personal and better expresses your sincerity. Keep this section concise to have a bigger impact.

For example: "I really enjoyed meeting you last week and discussing ways I can improve my knowledge and skills to prepare for a higher-level position with the company. I looked into the course you recommended and signed up for the fall semester, so thanks again for your insight!"

6. Conclude and sign

To end your letter, write another statement of gratitude to reiterate your appreciation. For example: "Thank you again for taking the time to meet with me on Monday. I look forward to hearing from you soon"

Then, choose an appropriate closing, such as "Sincerely," "Respectfully," or "Kind regards." If you're sending a physical letter, sign your name underneath the closing statement to personalize the letter. If you're sending it by email, typing your name is sufficient.

Related: How To End a Letter

7. Proofread

Before you send your letter, take some time to proofread it carefully. Look out for errors in grammar and spelling and ensure your tone is concise and sincere throughout. Ensuring your appreciation letter is error-free leaves a lasting positive impression on the recipient. It's one way to show you put a lot of effort into the letter and makes you seem more sincere.

To perfect your appreciation letter, here are some proofreading tips to consider:

  • Read the letter aloud: A great way to proofread your letter is to read it aloud. You can read it yourself, ask a friend, or have your computer read it back to you. This is a great way to find errors as you have to pay attention to every word you're reading.

  • Be aware of your common errors: If you know you use certain words too often or make the same grammatical errors a lot, look out for these errors in your letter. Looking for specific errors makes it more likely that you'll find and correct them before sending your letter.

  • Ask a friend or family member to review the letter: Another great way to proofread your letter is to ask your friends or family members to do it. They'll be able to spot errors you may have missed after looking at the letter for too long. Friends and family members can also give you honest feedback about your writing without worrying about offending you.

Template of an appreciation letter

Use the following template to help format your appreciation letter and ensure you don't leave anything out:

[Your name and contact information]

[Date]

[Recipient's name and contact information]

[Greeting]

First paragraph: Express your gratitude with specific examples of why you're thanking them.

Second paragraph: Further details about why you're thanking them or any details from prior conversations you had.

Third paragraph: Close with any additional thoughts, information, or potential next steps you plan to take.

End with a polite closing and your name.

Examples of appreciation letters

Here are two examples of what an appreciation letter should look like to help you write your own:

Example 1

Here is an example of an appreciation letter to a personal contact for facilitating an interview:

Jane Adams
JaneAdams@email.com
(555) 555-5555

June 20, 2021

Alexander Lee
AlexanderLee@email.com
(555) 555-5555

Dear Alexander,

I wanted to write to say thank you for meeting with me last week to discuss my goal to pursue an executive editor role at your company. I appreciated your offer to connect me with your manager, John Smith, as I met with him yesterday to interview for the executive editor role.

I think the interview went really well, and I wouldn't have had that opportunity without your help, so thank you! Mr. Smith mentioned in the meeting that you spoke very highly of me as well, which I really appreciate. I hope we'll be working together soon!

Please let me know if there's anything I can help you with, and I'll update you with the results of my interview as soon as I hear back. Again, thank you so much for your help!

Kind regards,

Jane Adams

Example 2

Here is an example of an appreciation letter to a hiring manager after an interview:

Matthew Brogan
MatthewBrogan@email.com
(555) 555-5555

June 16, 2021

Leanne Jackson
LeanneJackson@email.com
(555) 555-5555

Dear Ms. Jackson,

Thank you for taking time out of your busy schedule to interview me for the marketing manager position on Monday. I really enjoyed talking to you and learning more about the company and the role.

I'm very excited about the prospective opportunity to join the company as I think I'd be able to bring a wider awareness to your work through social media. Since we discussed what your social media presence is lacking, I developed a short-term and long-term plan to help improve your metrics and garner a larger audience. I'd love to discuss these plans with you if you're interested.

Until then, I look forward to hearing from you about the next steps in the hiring process. If you have any further questions, please feel free to call or email me.

Kind regards,

Matthew Brogan

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