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In which we discuss cover letter templates, cover letter tips, and a cover letter sample addressed to a certain Mr. Holmes of 221B Baker Street. Elementary, my dear YouTube.

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Hey! So we talked previously about how to write a resume, as demonstrated by a Mr Potter of applying for a job at the Ministry Of Magic, but what about cover letters? Here's some cover letter tips to make you a Sherlock for a interview. 

Before step one comes step zero which is pre-writing. Now to quote LinkedIn: The purpose of a cover letter is "to introduce yourself as a candidate to the hiring manager, and to provide the context for your application.". Although a cover letter and a resume will have some informational overlap they do have very distinct purposes. As puts it: "a resume will get you in the door, but the cover letter will get the company to open the door in the first place." 

So if you've already watched our resume video you'll know that before you start the application process it helps to be begin with lists. These lists should include your previous jobs, your duties there, what skills you used, highest level of education, certificates, licenses, skills, talents, strengths, accomplishments or awards, professional organizations which you are a member, volunteer experience and information about the company itself. 

You'll use the information on these lists as you customize your cover letter for each position you apply to.

Step one: Formatting. It's relatively rare these days to send an actual, physical cover letter. We wont go into super specifics about those. But in general we should use standard business letter format, your word processor should have this. And make sure you use a clear readable font such as Times New Roman. A common mistake people make when they email cover letters is that they attach a cover letter as a separate document. 

Instead its better to paste it in the body of the email. That makes your cover letter more likely to be read.

Having said that, always follow the specific guidelines for how each company wants to be contacted.

In some positions, such as creative jobs, you have a little more leeway in how the cover letter should be. But now, in my opinion, especially if you don't know the hiring manager, you should air on the side of cautious professionalism.

Step two, if this is a email then you should mention the job position in the subject line.

Step three: addressing the addressee. If at all possible, avoid the dreaded sir/maddam situation ever and instead address the person whose duty it is to hiring. In case their name isn't as clear in the listing it is worth calling or emailing the company to find out. To be sure you should use appropriate titles, such as Mr, or Ms. 

In the first paragraphs you should state the purpose of the letter and say if you've been referred by any mutual acquaintances. so for instance: Dear Mr Holmes [etc].
He/she if we're talking about Joan Watson from CBS Elementary. which i highly recommend checking out. Shes so cool.

If you did not have a personal referral you should instead state where you saw the listing.

Step five, its all about you. One common mistake that people make is that using the cover letter to reiterate their resume. Highlight and expand on a few key aspects of your resume that specifically meet up with the qualifications stated in the job listing.

There are a number of different ways to go about this, stylistically but you should always do the requirements and duties of the job listing and and guide.

So the job was good as they where looking for a certain type of person with a certain type of experience you could say: as a person with that type of experience, i will bring a great deal of that type of experience to this job. 

I recommend keeping this to one paragraph so that they don't kill there word count. Put in examples for maximum impact. 

Step Six, the next paragraph is all about them. It's worth demonstrating your knowledge of the company. What are its goals, new strategies or products. By saying your new list of position the company can show that your wiling to go to the extra mile and can help you stand out from the crowd. Complete the statement [etc]

Step seven, conclusion. 

In the last paragraph be sure that you thank them for their time and there consideration. Also, be yourself and appropriately state that you'll follow up on the phone in a week or so and actually do that. You can also include: in the mean time you can reach me at... Phone number or email address.

Step eight: revise and proofread!

The cover letter is like a first impression so that make sure that your grammar and spelling error = frowny face. I'd have someone check it out for you, every word counts and keep your cover letter one page or less. 

Step nine, send that baby Sherlock away.

And that's all for you today and for any additional cover letter tips for us we'd love to hear from you in the comment section below. 

In the mean-time, I am drafting a cover letter to submit to the council for awesome catch-phrases. And I hope that they accept it because I am very qualified. I GOT NOTHING!