5 tips to a spicier cover letter

Hello, my dear readers!

Hope you’re having a great week. Let’s dive right in to this week’s topic, shall we?

As a freelancer, I’ve had to write many, many copy letters, whether it be for proposals through sites like Elance or for other job postings. As such, I’ve had a lot of opportunity to experiment with different cover letter approaches and tricks.

I’ve had success using a number of different cover letter formats. Maybe one of these might work for you, too!

1. Be Bold

The is the one cover letter trick specifically mentioned by one of my clients as something that stood out to her.

The particular line I used was “You can delete your job posting now. Your search is over!”

Your prospects will appreciate your confidence in your own abilities just as much as testimonials and a good word from your past clients.

Speaking of which…

2. Let your clients do the talking! 

Lately, I’ve been including testimonials from my previous clients in my cover letters. For example, perhaps that portion of my letter would go like this:

“I’m confident in my skills, but don’t take my word for it! Blah of Blah, Inc. writes: “Adam is high caliber to work with! I would recommend him without hesitation as well as re-hire him again. If you want someone who is professional, organized, efficient and with [an] intelligent viewpoint to assist with writing projects, he’s the guy!”

3. Tailor to the job you want

This is a pretty common sense, but it bears repeating. Sometimes, a generic letter will work, but there are other times when something tailored to the job posting is better. Maybe your client is looking for a book on, let’s say, pool maintenance. You’ll want to talk about your track record (assuming you have one) writing perhaps instruction manuals, e-books in the past about care and maintenance around the house, etc.; anything that might seem relevant to what the client is looking for (or as close as you can get while still remaining honest about your body of work).

4. Appeal to peer pressure

There’s a reason advertisements often brag about how many widgets and what-nots they’ve sold or how many clients they have – if you have several satisfied customers (or even just a few), let your prospect know! People are social creatures and tend to follow a crowd. If there’s a “crowd” that trusts you, that might be the push they need to trust you, too!

Here’s how I incorporated this into my cover letter:

“I invite you to join the ranks of my satisfied customers across six continents.”

Perhaps it might need some tweaking, but it’s a good place to start. Speaking of which:

5. Experiment!

I encourage you to try all sorts of cover letter formats and tricks. In all likelihood, whether you’re looking for your next freelancing gig or a permanent, full-time job, you’re going to have to send out several applications. Keep playing with your cover letter and your resume as you go along. Keep tweaking, keep refining, and keep on trucking. You can do this!

What kind of cover letter tips have worked for you? Discuss them in the comments below! 

Do you need video job interview tips? Check out my post here!

Be sure to check out my portfolio and professional site here

Talk to you next week!

– Adam


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2 thoughts on “5 tips to a spicier cover letter

  1. KeriLynn Engel September 3, 2014 at 7:52 am Reply

    Nice tips! The example given for #1 sounds a little too forceful for me, but I’ve found #2 (testimonials) gets a great response.


    • Adam September 3, 2014 at 8:04 am Reply

      I’m glad #2’s worked for you! It’s worked for me, too. Thanks for stopping by and reading!


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