You have a great resume, but that doesn’t always mean you’ll get the job. Imagine another candidate with an almost identical set of skills and experience. The trick to distinguishing yourself among comparable candidates is to set the tone with a terrific cover letter. It can really make the difference in making the final cut.
Pitch It Right
Don’t just write a cookie-cutter form letter addressed To Whom it May Concern and send it out with every inquiry. Tailor your letter for each application, making sure to think about the position and the company and the person who might be reviewing your application. The extra bit of work shows your thoughtfulness and also that you’re willing to go the extra mile to be professional and polished. Remember, hiring managers are hoping the next candidate they see will be the slam-dunk they’re looking for. Why not make it easy on them?
Talk Yourself Up
Imagine you’re a salesman with a briefcase full of… yourself. Getting hired is really no different than peddling a product. Prove with your letter exactly why you’re the absolute best fit for the position and the company. And believe in what you’re selling. Show them you are exactly what they need.
Did you have massive success at a particular company or with a particular project? Don’t just say that, give the numbers. Percentages, rates, dollar amounts—these can pack a lot of "wow" factor and grab the attention of the hiring manager.
Take a little extra time to write your cover letter with these suggestions on your mind, and you’ll really start to see a difference in how many interviews you land. It’s almost as good as being personally recommended, only you’re recommending yourself! Remember not to brag, but do your best to pitch yourself as the answer to all of their professional prayers.
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