4 Steps to Crafting the Most Convincing Cover Letter for PR
I couldn’t have explained the importance of a strong PR cover letter better myself:
“…nothing could be more basic to the art and science of communication than writing a simple and persuasive document presenting a case, supporting it with facts, and motivating the reader to take a desired action.” – Jimmy Sweeney
Plain and simple, if you work in public relations you need to be a great written communicator. You can find hundreds of sample cover letters to find the basic structure but the content is critical. Read on to learn how to craft the most convincing cover letter for a PR position.
If you care about landing a job with this company, address your cover letter to a specific person and do some research. Pay attention to their industry, expertise, what types of clients they’ve worked with, past successes, current projects, and new business ventures.
Read their website copy and company blog with an ear to the personality they’re trying to convey. This will help you decide whether to go with a professional vs. creative cover letter.
Find out what other sources (bloggers, competitors, media) have been saying about the firm you’re interested in. Try to figure out in what direction they’re headed, what goals they have or problems they face. If you can’t find anything juicy, narrow down a contact to call and ask questions.
2. THINK ABOUT IT
Hiring managers don’t offer positions to desperate job seekers out of the kindness of their hearts. They are trying to solve a problem. Figure out what it is and you can better angle your argument to show how you can solve it.
Are they expanding? Are they new to online marketing and need someone who knows social media? Did they just pick up some clients in the healthcare industry but lack experience?
What are they hoping to solve or achieve with your hire and how are you, in particular, the person to make that happen?
3. PRESENT YOUR CASE
Above all, the recipient of your cover letter is thinking, “What’s in it for me?” Connect the dots and be specific so they can see why your hire is the perfect solution.
Maybe you can explain the steps you would take to get their clients more coverage online. If it’s relevant, highlight the strategy you came up with at your last firm to strengthen their reputation in the healthcare sector. Use numbers and percentages to provide concrete evidence of past achievements that emphasize the skills you’ll be using for this job.
You should also answer the bigger question of why you have chosen PR as a career. Use this to justify your enthusiasm for this job in particular and show that your goals are in line with the company’s vision.
4. MAKE SURE IT’S PERFECT
If a hiring manager sees typos and grammatical errors, they will assume you make the same mistakes in your press releases. Make sure you have at least one good writer you know look over your work.
If your doc is over one page, cut out the fluff. Your writing needs to be succinct if you want the whole thing to be read. Be straightforward with facts and figures and sincere in your tone.
Assume that all of your competitors have also submitted good cover letters with no obvious mistakes. Find a way to make yours stand out. A bit of personality or humor can make your letter memorable. If that’s not your style, try a different format than usual to make it visually appealing.
Check out this article from RKPR for some stand out examples and memorable mistakes. What cover letter tricks have landed you a job in PR?