6 Top Secrets To Writing A Great Cover Letter 2019

6 Top Secrets To Writing A Great Cover Letter 2018

At best, a cover letter can help a job-seeker stand out from the pack. At worst, it can make a promising candidate seem like an uncreative cut-and-paster. Sadly, the vast majority of cover letters read essentially the same: Retreads of resumes that ramble on while repeating the obvious. Would you read one of these to the end if it were put in front of you? Probably not, and nor would most hiring managers.

Of course, the Internet is full of tips and tutorials on writing a cover letter, but few of them give much useful information other than the obvious (“Use good grammar!”). So I got to thinking about what cover letter tips and techniques have served me over the years. I came up with these six golden rules for writing a cover letter somebody will actually want to read.

1) Don’t repeat your resume

A lot of people write cover letters as if they were paragraph-form resumes. Fact is, your letter will be stapled (or attached to the same email) as your actual resume, so you can assume that they’ll at least glance at it (and probably with a keener eye than your cover letter). Instead, use your cover letter to show personality, curiosity, and an interest in the field you are applying to work in. My favorite pro tip: Google GOOG -0.01% around for the history of your field or company, and sprinkle some cool historical facts into your cover letter (or even use one as a lead). If I was applying for a job in tech, I might talk about how thrilling it was to see Moore’s law transform technology before my eyes, and how thrilled I am to be a part of this transformation. If I were applying for a job in fashion, I might talk about how much fashion has changed since the 80s (a lot!). Everything has a hidden history. Use it to show expertise and interest.

2) Keep it short

Less. Is. More. Three paragraphs, tops. Half a page, tops. Skip lengthy exposition and jump right into something juicy.

3) Address Nobody

Sometimes, you don’t know exactly who you should be addressing your letter to. Nix the generic and bland “Dear Hiring Manager” or “To Whom It May Concern”. If you absolutely don’t know who you should be addressing, then don’t address anybody. Instead, just jump right into the body of the letter.

4) Send it as a PDF

Not every office computer can read .docx or .pages files, but virtually everybody can open a PDF file without any conversion. File conversions are bad for two huge reasons. First, they are just as likely to not bother and move onto the next applicant. And, second, conversions can

introduce formatting errors. Both are bad. (Note: This story originally suggested .doc files. Definitely better than .docx, but, as the comments pointed out, PDF is surely better. It can’t be easily tampered with, and you have more control over how it appears on somebody’s screen.)

5) Never ever, ever use the following phrase

“My name is ___, and I am applying for the position as ____”.They already know this, and you’ll sound inexperienced

6) Close strong

Finish off by quickly (and I mean quickly) explaining how your experience or worldview will help you at the job. That’s key. That’s the closer. And it can be done in one to two seconds. If it goes any longer, you’re just rambling.

How to Write a Cover Letter for an Internship

 Sample of Cover Letter for an Internship

Caroline Forsey

1 Hireme Road

Boston, MA, 20813

Cell: 555-555-5555

Email: cforsey@hireme.com

April 15, 2018

 

Event Planning Department — Internship Program

Company A

35 Recruiting St.

Boston, MA, 29174

 

Dear Internship Coordinator,

At the suggestion of John Smith, a senior marketer at Company A, I am submitting my resume for the Event Coordinator internship position. I am a junior at Elon University, pursuing a bachelor’s degree in Sport and Event Management, and am passionate about event planning. I am thrilled to hear about Company A’s Event Coordinator internship program, and feel my experiences and skills would be an excellent match for your organization.

As an executive member of the Student Union Board at Elon, I am in charge of organizing, promoting, and implementing multiple school-related social activities per week, while being challenged to design new events. I work cohesively with a diverse team made up of students and faculty, and I also foster relationships with novelty companies.

My experience as an Orientation Leader has further prepared me for this internship. It was essential that I remain positive, outgoing, and energized during move-in day and act as a liaison between new students, families, and faculty in a fast-paced and demanding environment. I was expected to maintain a highly professional customer service ethic while interacting with families and new students.

My Elon University experiences, executive board membership, and orientation leadership role have prepared me to be successful in the Event Coordinator internship program. Thank you for your time and consideration. I look forward to the opportunity to discuss how I can add value to Company A.

Sincerely,

(handwritten signature)

Caroline Forsey

 Sample of Cover Letter for an Internship

Caroline Forsey

1 Hireme Road

Boston, MA, 20813

Cell: 555-555-5555

Email: cforsey@hireme.com

April 15, 2018

 

Marketing Department — Internship Program

Company A

35 Recruiting St.

Boston, MA, 29174

 

Dear Internship Coordinator,

I am a passionate, creative, and driven Elon University student with leadership and event planning experience, as well as strong communication skills. I am seeking opportunities to showcase my writing abilities in a challenging and stimulating environment. My skills and experiences will enable me to deliver successful results as a digital marketing intern for Company B.

Please allow me to highlight my key skills:

  • Prior experience writing blog posts and press releases for marketing objectives
  • Strong communication skills and ability to adopt voice for diverse audiences and varying purposes
  • Efficient in managing multiple projects with fast moving deadlines through organization and time-management skills
  • A firm understanding of grammar rules and how to write effectively
  • Experience in leadership positions, both as Student Union Board executive leader and as an Elon Orientation Leader
  • Proven ability to form positive relationships with people from around the globe, exhibited by my internship experience in China last summer
  • Experience organizing, promoting, and implementing social events
  • Proficient in Microsoft Office, Adobe Creative Suite (InDesign, Photoshop, and Premiere), and social media platforms

In closing, I look forward to the opportunity to discuss how I can be an asset to Company B. I will call next week to see if you agree that my qualifications are a match for the position. Thank you for your time and consideration.

Sincerely,

(handwritten signature)

Caroline Forsey

 Sample of Cover Letter for an Internship

Dear John Smith,

I am writing in regards of the vacancy for the consultancy internship with PwC, as advertised on RateMyPlacement. Please find my CV attached.

I am particularly drawn to this internship at PwC because of its concentration on sustainability and climate change consultancy. PwC is the market-leader in this field, and I am fascinated by the strategies PwC puts in place to help an organisation meet its social and environmental goals. I have been reading about PwC’s recent project, involving the implementation of new sustainability procedures in government buildings across the UK. My involvement in the ‘Clear Up Our Campus’ campaign at university was similar, and makes me a perfect candidate for this internship.

As my CV describes, I am two years into a Sustainable Engineering degree, achieving high grades in modules that focussed on sustainable planning in urban environment. My studies have imparted a groundwork of knowledge, and analytical skills that are crucial for a career in this field of consultancy. I also have three years of work experience at The Bear Factory, which has imparted great collaborative skills.

Thank you for considering my application, I look forward to the opportunity to discuss the programme further in an interview.

Yours Sincerely,

Your Name.

 A sample of Cover Letter for an Internship

 

[Today’s Date]

[341 Company Address

Company City, State, xxxxx

(xxx)xxx-xxxx

hiring.manager@gmail.com]

Dear Mr. /Mrs. /Ms. (Manager’s Name),

I’m writing to you regarding the marketing role that opened up recently. I came across the job description on [Website Name], and was delighted to find that my academic accomplishments meet all of the necessary requirements. I am seeking a challenging but rewarding internship, which is why I was drawn to this exciting opportunity.

As a junior marketing student at the University of Georgia, I have acquired skills in advertising, PR, product development, and market research. Currently I hold a 3.8 GPA and have been on the Dean’s List every semester. While in the college of business I have strategically focused my coursework in the following areas:

  • Marketing Analytics
  • Marketing Management
  • Survey Research
  • Strategic Internet Marketing
  • Integrated Marketing Communications

Using my knowledge of the above, I designed a marketing campaign for a local pet grooming business that yielded the highest return on investment based on a budget. The campaign was so well received that I was awarded third place in UGA’s business plan competition.

I would be delighted to have an opportunity to personally interview with you. Please accept the enclosed resume and feel free to contact me at your earliest convenience.  I appreciate your time and consideration.

Yours sincerely,

[Your Name]

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