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As you've guessed from the title, I'm writing a prospective email to venues, about hiring their venue for a day. I've drafted an email, but it just doesn't sound right so I would like some feedback. I want to get straight to the point, but I don't want it to sound to forward... I'm intending to call them next week so I don't need loads of information, just the most important.

Draft so far

To Whom It May Concern,

My name is [NAME], and I am interested in hiring a venue in East London for an exhibition that will be held in 2014. If possible, could you procure me information on the following?

What is the maximum capacity of your venue?

How much would it cost to hire your venue for a day?

Will we we be able to utilize the whole venue as we wish?

I will follow this email up by telephone next week. Should you want to get in contact with me beforehand, my number is [number].

Yours faithfully,

[Name]

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Ana, critiques are welcomed here, but they need to have specific questions to make them answerable questions, or they will be closed. Do you have questions about this? Specific areas of concern? –  Neil Fein Jun 24 '13 at 14:29
    
Apologies for the delayed reply. @NeilFein I have no further questions regarding the critiques. Thank you very much jwpat7 –  ana Jun 26 '13 at 12:37
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1 Answer

up vote 1 down vote accepted

For an RFI (Request for Information) I suggest not focussing on tone, but instead aiming at clarity, brevity, and completeness.

For clarity and brevity, rather than “I am interested in hiring”, write “I will hire”. For completeness, indicate a time frame and your capacity; for example, “In a few weeks I will hire” or “In a few weeks my organization will hire” or (a bit clumsily) “In a few weeks the organization I'm acting for will hire”.

Besides the exact date of the exhibition, venue owners will want to know (or may insist upon knowing) when you will make your decision and how large the group is. You might add to your list of questions whether a deposit will be required, whether advance payment is required, and whether a bond or insurance is offered or required.

The phrase “could you procure me information” is non-standard. For correctness you might write “could you provide me [with] information”, but for brevity write “Please let me know:” before your list of questions. Do not use a qualifier like “If possible” before your request. “Please” is ok as a qualifier, but “if possible” is unnecessary and sounds too tentative.

I suggest recasting “Will we we be able to utilize the whole venue as we wish?” as two separate questions or items, one regarding whether you will have sole occupancy of the venue, and another regarding whether you can use all of its facilities. Note, the rather open-ended phrase “as we wish” probably will cause qualms among some venue owners, because they will not know what your wishes might stretch to.

Instead of “Should you want to get in contact with me beforehand, my number is [number]”, a more-specific phrasing may be better: “If you have questions regarding this Request for Information, please call me at [number]”.

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protected by Neil Fein Jun 24 '13 at 16:31

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