Responding to a job ad or writing directly to a hiring manager at a company – either way, you need to write a cover letter that is specifically designed to meet the requirements of the job and the needs of the company you are writing to. There are four parts to a cover letter:
Introduction: Opening paragraph – The title of the job you are applying for and where you saw it advertised or, if you are writing directly to a company, why you are interested in working for them.
Your Pitch: Second paragraph –Your pitch, which consist of four parts: your job target title, years of experience, other skills you have and why you can solve their problems.
Your Accomplishments: Third paragraph- List your accomplishments – Write three to five bulleted accomplishments that relate directly to the position at the company. Start each with an active verb, state the problem, action you took or what you did and the results. Quantify the results with numbers, dollars, or percentages if possible. Compare your skills and experience with the requirements of the job.
Make the Ask: Fourth paragraph – “With my background in marketing, sales and digital media, I know I can improve your sales figures. I would love to meet with you to further discuss how I can make that happen and shall call you to set up a mutually agreeable time”. Or “My skills in program development, online learning and webinars can contribute to expanding your reach with educational products and I would welcome the opportunity to work with you. I shall call you to set up a convenient time to meet.”
Every job opportunity requires a different cover letter, tailored to the job and the company. There is no such thing as one cover letter for all jobs. Even if the job title is the same, tailor your letter to the job description and the company.