How to Write a Compelling Cover Letter

cover letter tips

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Ever felt like your job applications disappear into thin air? The solution might be your cover letter. Crafting one that stands out is key. But how do you do it, making the hiring manager really notice you?

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Your resume lists your work history and skills. Yet, your cover letter is all about your personality, passion, and connection to the job1. Many hiring managers believe the cover letter is crucial1. A good one is between half and a full page, roughly 250 to 400 words1. Some employers could give you a word or character limit to follow.

Think of your cover letter as a chance to add to your resume, not repeat it2. It’s your time to shine by sharing why you’re excited about the job and how your skills match up2. A strong cover letter can make the hiring manager see that you’re perfect for the job. It might just get you an interview.

What is a Cover Letter and Why is it Important?

A cover letter is vital when you apply for a job. It introduces you and shows why you’re perfect for the job. It’s a way to share your skills, experience, and why you’re excited about the job3. Many employers like seeing a cover letter with your resume, and some even require it4. When you add a cover letter, 77% of hiring managers think more highly of your application5. It gives them more info about you than just your resume. This can help you stand out among other applicants.

Understand the Purpose of a Cover Letter

A well-done cover letter can make you stand out. It shows what makes you unique and interested in the job3. If your cover letter is good, you’re more likely to get an interview3. It also lets you connect your past experiences to what the job needs. This shows you’re a good fit for the role3. Adding a touch that shows you’re interested in the company’s goals can really help your application.

When to Submit a Cover Letter

Cover letters are usually needed for specific jobs5. They’re common in places where job hunters use them to talk more about themselves and why they’re right for the job5. Even if not asked for one, including a cover letter is often smart. It lets you explain how your skills match the job better than just your resume3. So, it’s a good idea to submit a cover letter when you can. It might just give you an edge over others who didn’t include one.

Research the Employer and Job Description

Before you write your cover letter, make sure to research the employer and look at the job description. Check out the company’s goals, beliefs, and the work they’re doing. You can find this info on their website, social media, and in the news6. Knowing this will help you explain why you’re perfect for the job and the company6.

Look closely at what the job is asking for. Make sure your cover letter shows how your skills and experiences match what they need6. Most jobs, about 72%, want you to send a cover letter7. This makes it really important to customize your cover letter to the job.

Doing your homework makes your cover letter 40% more likely to be successful7. Use all the info you can find about the company, like their website or what people say on Glassdoor. This helps you stand out and show you’re truly interested in the job.

Keep your cover letter short, about one page and single-spaced8. When you apply online, send your cover letter as a PDF if you can. This is preferred by most employers, around 85% of them7. Making your cover letter fit the job well can boost your interview chances by 45%7.

By really getting to know the employer and the job, you can write a strong cover letter. It will show why you’re the right person for the job. Using a smart strategy will make you a top candidate and improve your chance of getting that interview768.

Reflect on Your Qualifications and Motivation

Before writing your cover letter, think about why you want the job9. Look at your resume to find the best skills, knowledge, and experiences that match the job10. Think about your career but also your classes, projects, internships, and volunteering. These things help you develop skills. Figuring out your top qualifications lets you show how you can do well in the job.

Identify Relevant Skills and Experiences

Look at your skills and experiences that fit what the job needs11. Talk about how your past makes you right for the job, using examples10. Show how your unique skills and past make you perfect for the job. This can really impress the employer.

Also, think about why you really want this job10. Show excitement in your letter, saying what you like about the job and company. Showing true excitement helps your letter stand out from others.

Structure Your Cover Letter Effectively

When writing a cover letter, it’s key to have a clear approach. Use a common business letter setup, with a header, greeting, middle part, and closing12. Always aim for a single page with small to medium font sizes and regular spacing. TheBalance noted these are the best practices in 201812.

Make sure your cover letter looks organized and easy to follow12. Each part should smoothly lead into the next. It’s vital to personalize the content for the job and company. Avoid generic letters; they don’t catch the eye of hiring managers12. Customizing your cover letter to what the employer is looking for is key13.

Include your contact info and a professional email in your cover letter12. If you’re mailing it or dropping it off, add the employer’s details. For emails, make sure to know who to address it to, instead of ‘To Whom It May Concern.’12

The cover letter should tell the employer what job you’re after and highlight your skills and accomplishments12. If you achieved something notable, make it stand out by bolding it. End with a professional touch, using phrases like “Sincerely.” Don’t forget to sign off with your name and info12.

A well-organized cover letter can make a big difference. It shows your interest in the job and why you’re a good fit12. Doing this right can raise your chances of landing an interview13.

Write an Engaging Introduction

Your cover letter introduction sets the stage for the reader. It’s vital to begin strongly, stating the job you want and showing your excitement14. This grabs the reader’s interest right away. They’ll want to know more about why you’re a good match for the job.

State the Position and Your Interest

Start by naming the job you’re interested in and why it excites you. If someone inside the company suggested you apply, mention that15. This shows you’re serious about the job and that you might already have a foot in the door.

Tell the reader a bit about yourself next. Share a quick summary of your experience, skills, and what drives you to apply1. This makes it easy for them to see how you could fit the position. It also hooks them to read further into your application.

Your opening should be short but powerful. It’s your chance to make the reader want to know more about you. By clearly showing why you’re excited and how you’re a good fit, you’re on the right track to make them keen on your application.

Craft Compelling Body Paragraphs

Your cover letter’s body paragraphs are key to showing off your skills and strengths16. Each paragraph should start with a key skill or experience. Then, give specific examples to show how you’ve used them17. Link your background to the job’s needs. Explain how your past has made you ready for this role16. Talk about your top achievements. Don’t repeat what’s in your resume.

Highlight Your Qualifications and Strengths

When writing the body paragraphs, focus on your skills and how they fit the job16. Use words that show you match the position and can help the company17. Talk about what you achieved. Make sure it’s relevant to the role16. Tailor each paragraph to the job, so your cover letter shines and grabs the hiring manager’s eye.

cover letter body paragraphs

Keep your cover letter short and to the point. Use bullet points to draw attention to your skills18. Also, dodge mistakes like starting with a generic greeting or making the letter too long16. Crafting strong body paragraphs will show why you’re the perfect fit for the job17.

cover letter tips

Crafting a compelling cover letter is key in the job hunt. It’s not just about what you say. There are important tips to follow for the best results. Keep it professional and polished. Steer clear of being too casual19. And, always check for mistakes in grammar, spelling, and how it looks19.

Make each cover letter specific to the job. This is better than using a template20. Tailor it to fit what the job and company need. This shows your real interest and helps you stand out20.

Also, don’t miss following any special instructions from the job ad. This includes how to format your letter or where to send it1.

For structure, aim for a cover letter that’s well-organized19. It should be around 250 to 400 words and follow a classic four-paragraph style1. But remember, some employers might have special rules to follow like word limits or specific questions1.

Follow these cover letter writing tips and make a strong, tailored application. This will help you shine in your job search19201.

Conclude with a Positive and Enthusiastic Tone

As you finish your cover letter, it’s vital to stay positive and upbeat. This last touch could really sway the hiring manager in your favor21. It’s known that all the example cover letters we’ve seen end on a high note. They show excitement, thankfulness, and a readiness for what comes next22.

Speaking to a specific person in your cover letter makes it 50% more noticeable than one that’s not. Plus, about 76% of hiring managers think showing enthusiasm and passion is crucial. It helps you stand out from all the other job seekers22.

Tell them you are really interested and explain how your skills make you perfect for the job23. Often, hiring managers get loads of applications for every job. Your cover letter lets your unique self shine. So, by showing you’re excited and grateful, you’ll leave a great mark on the manager23.

Don’t just repeat what you said earlier. Instead, show you want to talk more about how you can help their business succeed22. It’s been found that a clear, professional cover letter ups the response rate by 65%. And writing with confidence and a firm tone can boost your interview chances by 40%22.

At the end of your letter, make it personal. Ask for an interview or a talk to go over your skills23. Sharing real-life stories in your cover letter can get you noticed for an interview. Keeping your tone upbeat and professional is key to a good first impression23.

A positive, enthusiastic end to your cover letter can really make a difference. Letters that are personal and show love for the job tend to grab the hiring manager’s eye more212223.

Edit and Proofread Your Cover Letter

After writing your cover letter, it’s key to edit and proofread. This step ensures your letter has no mistakes, like typos. It shows you care about detail and are professional24.

Start by reviewing your cover letter closely, focusing on how your sentences sound. Using an active voice is a good idea. This means the subject of your sentences is doing the action. It makes your letter more interesting. Try not to repeat what’s in your resume. Use clear and brief language to talk about your skills24.

Use Active Voice and Avoid Repetition

When you edit, aim for an active voice. This makes your achievements come off stronger. Passive voice can make things sound dull. Also, make sure you’re not just copying your resume. You want your letter to add new, interesting info2425.

Reading your letter out loud can really help. It shows you where you might need to reword things. Don’t be afraid to get someone else’s opinion. They can give you great advice, making your letter even better25.

There are also online tools like Grammarly or ProWritingAid. They can help you spot mistakes. By checking your letter thoroughly, you’ll stand out. It will leave a great impression on the person reading it25.

edit cover letter

Customize for Each Opportunity

Applying for multiple jobs means you must customize each cover letter. Avoid a generic approach. It makes your application seem more genuine and thoughtful.

Only 20% of job seekers change their cover letters to fit each job. Yet26, tailoring cover letters for each job increases interview chances by 50%.

Thoroughly research the employer and job. Then, make sure your cover letter directly meets their unique needs. Adding the right keywords improves your application26. This approach makes recruiters more likely to invite you for an interview.

Putting in this extra research shows you’re truly interested in the job. This approach, with tailored cover letters for each job, increases your success rate. It’s better to apply for five jobs with personalized cover letters than 10 with generic ones26.

Cover letters should be one page or less. This keeps hiring managers interested.

26 Getting a second opinion on your cover letter can boost its impact by 40%. And26 those who stretch the truth about their skills are 60% less likely to get the job. By crafting a specific cover letter for each position, you’ll stand out and brighten your interview prospects272826.


A well-crafted cover letter can really help job seekers stand out29. Make sure to know why you’re writing the letter. Know who you’re writing to and what the job is about. Think about what makes you a great fit. Then, write your letter clearly and to the point. This will show the employer why you’re the perfect person for the job30.

Don’t forget to check your letter for mistakes. Make sure each letter you send out is different. And keep your letter positive and upbeat31. Following these steps will make your cover letter shine. It will give you a better chance of getting noticed by the employer.

The conclusion of your cover letter is super important. It’s almost like saying goodbye to the hiring manager29. Write a short, strong summary of why you’re perfect for the job. This will leave a great final impression. It might even help you get that call for an interview30. A strong ending in your cover letter shows that you’re professional and detail-oriented. This could really impress the person reading your letter29.

Your cover letter is your chance to show what makes you special and excited about the job31. Treat the ending with as much thought as you’ve put into the whole letter. By using the tips from this guide, you can create a memorable ending. This part of your letter will quickly sum up why you’re the best choice. And it will leave a strong, positive memory with the hiring manager.

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