As a job seeker, it can be exhausting sending out dozens of applications every week. Not only should your resume showcase your achievements, but your cover letter should help you persuade the company to hire you.
However, writing the perfect cover letter can be quite challenging too. Hence, here are some writing tips on how to make your cover letter attractive.
1. Prepare Well Before Writing
First and foremost, you need to prepare well before you actually start writing the cover letter. If you are unprepared and haven’t done your research, you will quickly start making mistakes that could have been easily avoided.
Read about the company you are applying to and try to understand what their branding is like. Moreover, find out to whom you need to address your cover letter. Even if it is just an application form on a job board, it’s a good idea to visit the company’s website or LinkedIn profile to check who is their HR manager.
2. Make First Impressions Count
Remember that your cover letter is often the first impression a person gets of you. In many cases, your cover letter will be viewed together with your resume, so the two need to work in a way that will complement each other.
In addition to that, you should think carefully about your cover letter’s opening line. Making this line memorable will help you stand out from the crowd and be remembered even after the HR manager has viewed hundreds of other applications.
3. Show Your Enthusiasm
While you need to be professional throughout your entire cover letter, it doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t show your human side. In fact, showing some emotions can be quite useful. Don’t be afraid to show your enthusiasm for the role and for working at the company you are applying to.
Likewise, make sure that you sound confident in your cover letter. Instead of saying “believe”, “feel”, “hope”, state your opinions boldly, especially when you are explaining why you are the right person for the job.
4. Stay Consistent and On Topic
Consistency is an often-overlooked aspect of writing cover letters. Being consistent with your claims as well as with your writing style (e.g. capitalization) is essential to making your cover letter look professional.
In addition to that, you should never stray too far from the main subject of your letter. Everything you write here needs to relate to the job description. This will help you meet company expectations while also showing that you aren’t simply sending out the same cover letter to every job listing you find.
5. Focus on The Company
Speaking of your cover letter relating to the job description, it’s always important to focus on the company first and foremost. From the tone you use to the references you make to certain pieces of information, it should all come back to the company above all else.
For instance, if you are telling an anecdote, make sure that it matches the tone of the company and that it isn’t too long. Otherwise, it could make your email too long which would, in turn, show that you are inconsiderate about your recipient’s time.
6. Support Your Arguments
Though showing your enthusiasm for the role is great, it won’t be enough to win you the spot. This is precisely why you need to support your arguments and claims about yourself. Use numbers and measurable achievements to prove that you are the expert you claim to be while also describing a pain point the company has that you could solve.
If you are still unsure about your writing abilities, you can always hire a professional writer to help you craft the perfect cover letter. To find the right writer for you, consult the reviews of services doing custom writing assignments.
7. Avoid Using Jargons and Cliches
As mentioned earlier, the anecdote you tell needs to be appropriate and should match the tone of the company. Just like humor, jargons and cliches need to be kept to a minimum if not avoided completely.
You can still use technical terms as well as slang, but only where it is appropriate. Meaningless and over-used cliches need to be avoided – they simply show that you aren’t good at writing and can’t actually “think outside of the box.”
8. Don’t Repeat Your Resume
Because your resume and cover letter will often be viewed together, there is no need to repeat what you said on your resume by writing about it in your cover letter. After all, your cover letter and your resume serve two different purposes. Your resume includes the barebones facts about you while your cover letter should add some character to your image.
9. Summarize and Request a Follow-Up
At the end of your cover letter, make sure to summarize everything you talked about and then request a follow-up. Showing that you are expecting a response will encourage the HR manager to reach out to you, even if you don’t get the job. Seeing no response is worse than getting a rejection. And if you don’t get a response after some point, go ahead and send follow-up letters of your own to ask about the results of your application.
10. Proofread and Format Correctly
Last but not least, don’t forget to proofread and format your cover letter correctly. Any spelling, grammar, or punctuation mistakes will make you look unprofessional, so it’s definitely worth proofreading your letter. Similarly, spend some time formatting your cover letter correctly. Break it down into paragraphs and make it readable that way.
At the end of the day, there is no definite predictor of being hired. There are just too many factors that can affect your chances of being given a particular role. That being said, you can still work on your cover letter to make it more attractive and to increase these chances. Use the tips in this article to help you improve your cover letter and find the right job with its help.
Frank Hamilton has been working as an editor at top writing reviews company. He is a professional writing expert in such topics as blogging, digital marketing and self-education. He also loves traveling and speaks Spanish, French, German and English.