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How to Write a Cover Letter for a Resume

By on July 9, 2012
Blog post - How to write a cover letter

Professional career coach, Unre Visagie answers your top six resume cover letter questions.

The goal of a cover letter is introduce you in such a way that the recruiter cannot put your resume down. You want to avoid the dreaded “Resume Bin” at all costs!

After you read this post, or you can just watch the 10min coaching video, you will be able to write a more effective cover letter. Also watch “How to write a resume.”

Remember, the cover letter is the start of your story. Do not be cold and removed. Be warm and be real, tell your story.

The top six questions about how to write a cover letter answered!

Watch the video or scroll down to read the text.

Does this describe your current job hunting efforts:

You have sent out hundreds of copies of your resume with very little response. Your cover letter could be the culprit! The goal of your cover letter is to make you so awesome that the recruiter simply must read your resume.

If your cover letter reads as follows:

To Whom It May Concern

Find attached my resume.

Your Name and Surname

Then you are making one of the most common mistakes hopeful job seekers make! The cover letter is a fundamental part of your resume strategy and you should make full use of your “Resume Grabbing Cover Letter.”

Apply these answers and write a winning cover letter!

Here are the top six questions with quick answers to each. Watch the video for a more complete picture.

What’s the real purpose of a cover letter?

Grab the attention and make it compelling for the reader to want to get to know you better. They get to know you better by reading your resume. The reader must associate with what you write in your cover letter, help him/her understand why they have this resume in front of them.

What exactly should I put in my cover letter, and what should I leave out?

At the top it must be clear to who this cover letter is addressed. You first paragraph must refer to why they are receiving your resume. If you have the name of the reference that referred you to the job, and it will add value, then include this person’s name. Establish trust with the first paragraph.

Middle part should say how you are suited to this job opportunity and the contribution you are going to make, in roughly three sentences.

Bottom you say thank you, but you also state your fit to the job again, in conclusion, could be a call to action here. Keep the call to action in your control. I expect a telephone call, but will call you in a week.

What are the worst cover letter mistakes?

Worst one is “Herewith my resume” and then telling the recruiter that you really need this job. Words that have no meaning, like “I will be good in this job.” Words that do not differentiate you from the thousands of other applicants. Use words that entice the recruiter to want to get to know you better. Compelling, demanding, the recruiter must want to get to know you.

How do I handle sticky situations in my cover letter, like for example being fired?

Under no circumstance is there anything negative in your cover letter.

Are there ways to increase the impact of my cover letter?

Keep it factual yet emotional. People like to read stories, so make it read like a story. Do your research about the company you are applying with and use words that link your story to them. Weave your story into their story.

If you have little or no actual work experience then start by watching “How to write a resume with no experience.”

About Unre Visagie

Me and my team already helped hundreds of people find and build careers they love and earn million dollar paychecks every year. We know what to do to help you get the career of your dreams.

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