Elements of Eye-Catching Cover Letters
Part of the Cover Letters For Dummies Cheat Sheet
Avoid sending a generic cover letter and instead submit one that stands out, inspires intrigue, and gets noticed by employers. To ensure that your cover letter is a memorable one, ask yourself if it covers these critical points:
Addresses its reader by name; if a name is absolutely, positively unavailable, it addresses by the best alternative title.
Introduces me by mentioning a mutual contact, previous telephone conversation or meeting, or by using a "hook" statement that sells my hottest, most relevant qualifications.
Centers on the employer. As much as possible, it matches point-by-point what the employer wants; in effect, my letter says, "You want, I offer."
Specifically tells an employer how I can make money or save money for the company while doing the job the employer wants done.
Is rich with accomplishments and achievements. I measure them with real numbers, percentages, or dollar amounts.
Has no typos.
Is filled with powerful, selling words for extra bite.
Illustrates specific product, company, and industry knowledge — showing I did my homework.
Translates acronyms, technical jargon, or military lingo into plain English.
Closes by asking for an interview, promising to follow up at a given time.
Carefully measures the amount of personal data posted online, guarding against identity theft.
Contains keywords that software systems can easily pick up.
Informs the reader of the position I want near its top or in the "Regarding" space; if not, it gives ample clues to how I could fit in well to any of several positions.