What is a Letterhead? Is it Still Important Today?

When it comes to the art of good personal or corporate correspondence, there's a powerful secret weapon that serves perfectly as a signature flourish. It’s something akin to the grand entrance at a party – an emblem of professionalism and distinctiveness!  What is this mystery thing, you ask?  Well, it’s that little thing known as a letterhead, also called letter headed paper.

What is a Letter Head?

When we refer to a headed letter you may think we are simply talking about your name and address neatly penned, or printed, at the top of a page of beautiful writing paper.  In reality, it is much, much more than that.

This is because it is a visual statement; it is akin to having your own personal insignia or, if you're a company, your very own distinct banner fluttering in the wind of communication. That’s because this letterhead paper doesn't just showcase information; it is a silent symphony, expressing your individual style, or a company's ethos.

Think about it.  When you order fancy writing paper every element of your personalised letterhead - from the chosen font and colour scheme to the design, even down to the paper's texture and weight, all becomes an ingredient in this concoction of personal expression.  In short, it's a creative outlet that articulates a story, a narrative unique to you or your business.  It elicits an instant reaction from the person receiving it and gives them an instant impression of the sender.

Why is Letter Headed Paper Important?

That’s a simple one to answer - it's because it is your very own title sequence; announcing your presence and, more importantly, setting the tone for your message. 

So even in this digital age, when one might wonder if the concept of a letterhead is becoming outdated, a tad passe, the answer is a resounding no, it isn’t! 

Unlike electronic communication a personal message written on nice writing paper is a bit different.  It’s a tactile thing, one that can’t just be ignored on a phone, left to languish in an inbox, or simply deleted.  This is why it remains, even today, such a vital ingredient in the recipe of communication, because it adds that distinctive flavour of authenticity and panache. The bottom line is that it helps you stand out from a crowd.

Where Does Using Headed Paper Give an Advantage?

Consider, for instance, the arena of job applications.  A letterhead on an application letter isn't just a garnish; a few words on some pretty writing paper.  It’s so much more.  The reality is that it’s a full course in the feast of first impressions.  

It tells a prospective employer that you mean business.  It shows them that you value professionalism, and that you care about the minutiae. It takes your words and elevates them from mere text to a statement of intent.  It gets you noticed!  An application written on letterhead is far less likely to hit the waste paper basket, or languish at the bottom of an in tray.

And it's not just job applications that benefit from a well-designed, smart looking headed letter. Recommendation letters gain an added weight when accompanied by one.

Some of the world's most prestigious institutions, like the University of Oxford, suggest that a recommendation letter should ideally be presented on headed paper. If it works for those hallowed halls, then surely it makes sense for us too, right?

For businesses too, letters are as important today, as they ever were. A meticulously crafted letterhead emanates a distinct air of legitimacy; it breathes credibility into your missives, reflecting your company's, seriousness and reliability.

Headed Notepaper – a Vital Tool to Help you Get Ahead

So, when you next see a letterhead, whether it's on your own stationery or someone else's, know that it's more than just marks on paper.  Despite the speed and brevity of modern communication, it remains a hallmark in the world of professional and personal communication, a nod to tradition that also adds a sprinkle of style and substance.

It’s not just information at the top of the page, it is a declaration of your identity; a silent greeting, and a testament to the art of personal or professional communication.

And remember, even though we live in an age of rapid-fire texts and emails, headed paper is a reminder of the thought and care that underpins every meaningful exchange.  It’s a beacon that lights up your unique style, or a company’s brand image.  So, whether you’re an individual hoping to make your correspondence more impactful, or a company striving to stand out from the crowd, do not forget this essential tool in your arsenal. 

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