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Cover Letter Tips You Should Know

One of the toughest aspects of running a job-hunting campaign is writing winning cover letters that effectively introduce you to prospective employers while helping you to gain interviews. Cover letters have always been important, but in today’s competitive job market, they are of greater importance than ever. Use our tips for cover letters that stand head and shoulders above the rest.

Top Tips for Writing Great Cover Letters

Writing a basic cover letter is simple. Writing one that helps you stand out from the pack is just as easy, but it does require you to take your time and tailor the content to the specific situation at hand. To help ensure that your resume gets noticed, leaves and impact and cannot be ignored, implement the following cover letter tips:

  • The first cover letter tip to take into consideration is trying to get contact information for a hiring manager or other individual so you can customize your letter by addressing it to a specific person.
  • Look at cover letter examples before starting yours. Consider which type of cover letter will work best for you and think about making a few different types before deciding on a final one. Taking your time and making the process a thoughtful one is among the best cover letter tips to help leverage the power of the letter, helping ensure it works as intended.
  • Work your hardest to impress the person who will be reading your cover letter, but don’t do it by using pretentious language. Instead, focus on impressing the reader with your top accomplishments and skills relevant to the job at hand. Use simple language and don’t over-complicate your sentences. At the same time, don’t do a sloppy job – and even if your writing happens to be stellar, do not skip the important step of having someone review your cover letter, proofreading it for mistakes and considering whether it is as effective as it should be. If you have no one to help you with this, at least run your document through spell check to be sure there are no errors.
  • Specifically tell the employer how you will be able to contribute to the company. Show that you understand what the company needs, and illustrate how you will be able to meet those needs in a very specific way. Giving solid examples is a great way to distinguish your cover letter from the others that the company is almost certainly receiving. Know what kind of competition you are likely to encounter and do your best to outshine other applicants. At the same time, a key cover letter tip is to remember to be honest!
  • Show that you are a capable individual and illustrate that you are unique. When companies are looking for people to fill positions, they are searching for those who stand head and shoulders above the competition. So spend some time thinking about what it is that makes you unique, and be generous with yourself when you do so. Humility is indeed a virtue, but your cover letter is not the place to be overly humble! What is the one reason this company needs you? Why should they choose you for the position you’re applying for? If you can come up with one major difference between you and the competition and build an outstanding paragraph around it, you are almost certain to be at an advantage.

A Final Cover Letter Tip

Finally, be sure to structure your cover letter properly and know what information to include. You’ll find more fantastic cover letter tips throughout Ginger’s writing center. The letter's structure might seem trivial, but at the moment of writing it, you might be too focused on other matters to pay attention to it. For this reason, one of the most important cover letter tips is to step away from the letter for a few minutes once it is complete, and come back to it only later with a fresh set of eyes, making sure it is readable, understandable, that it stands out, and that its structured like a proper cover letter.