Your LinkedIn profile, portfolio site, and resume (if you have posted it, which is a good idea) are accessed by a multitude of diverse users for various purposes in a public forum. A cover letter is a personal and direct communication with a specific individual; in fact, today’s cover letters are emails. As such, it is both an opportunity to make a distinctive and unique connection with the hiring manager and a way to support guiding the selection process. The goal of a cover letter is to win an interview.
Motion Graphics Designer Cover Letter Guide & Tips
Think of a Cover Letter as a Conversation
The hiring manager is not a bot. Even if you are responding to an online post, chances are you will eventually be dealing with a real human being. Start by addressing them personally, as if you are having a conversation with them. If needed, search for their name and title to ensure you have spelled their name and information correctly.
As with any conversation, it should have a beginning, middle, and end. Start with a warm and cordial opening, move to tell your story, and close by expressing gratitude and a call to action. You can see our cover letter examples at the end of this section if you need to see some in action.
Highlight the Relevant Parts of Your Resume for the Hiring Manager
Your resume lists the skills and accomplishments that you’ve acquired through the roles you have worked in during your career. A cover letter is the opportunity to point to the skills and accomplishments in your resume that are relevant to a specific role and another opportunity to sell yourself. What makes you the perfect fit for this role? What motion design sample on your portfolio site is exactly what they want to do? Mention experience in the same business sector, even a colleague that works there already – anything that can enhance the connection, distinguish yourself from the pack, and assert that it is a small world after all.
Address the Job Post Description Rigorously
This is a custom communication, and as such, you should expertly tailor it to the job description at hand.
Analyze the job post: what level of experience are they looking for? What tools do you need to be an expert in? What business sector does the organization work in (some posts require experience in a particular field)? Who will you work with (design directors, marketers, c-suite executives)? Will you need your own equipment, or will hardware and software be provided? What is your availability? Notice the keywords or phrases they use to describe the opportunity – use those exact keywords and phrases in your cover letter.
Make it a point to address each of their bullets specifically and thoroughly, in the order they are listed in the job post. Reiterate every detail. The more boxes you can check, the higher the chances you will be on their shortlist. Be succinct – hiring managers have mere seconds to read your cover letter. Tell your story quickly and memorably.
On a lesser note, consider this a chance to address a possible shortcoming on your resume. Maybe you did this type of work, but not in that industry. You don’t have corporate c-suite experience, but you worked closely with a design studio’s founders. The only software you don’t know in their very long wish list is Cinema 4D, but you are a Houdini expert. You were in the pipeline with a VFX person, looking over their shoulder, but didn’t do any VFX work for that project. More often than not, a job posting is a bucket that managers pour every conceivable requirement into. Maybe a particular bullet is a “good to have” item, not a “need to know” item. Let your enthusiasm for the opportunity shine through, and don’t let a missing requirement or two hold you back from applying for your dream role.
Have a Template Ready to Go
Speed to market is critical in a job search, especially in the freelance/contracting space. Sometimes, a quick reply may be enough to receive a response. Having a shell document with all your best prose ready to go is useful. Write snippets for all the different qualifications you see in job posts: what you did, where you worked, with whom you worked, and what you know. Facts and statistics work great here, and it’s important to avoid flowery or insincere language. Have your top URLs (portfolio site, reels, LinkedIn profile, resume, motion samples, YouTube and Instagram channels, etc.) in the text document ready to go, and double-check that they still work. End the cover letter with a call to action: bring up your resume’s highlights to prompt them to re-read it, or express anticipation of hearing from them. Most importantly, thank the reader for the time they spent reviewing your cover letter.
Share Your Passion
What attracted you to this job post from the dozens that you read? Why do you think this is a perfect fit? Employers love to hear enthusiasm. Explain why you are the best candidate for the role.
5 Motion Graphics Designer Cover Letter Tips
Tip #1: Make This Personal
Think of this as a virtual one-on-one with the hiring manager; your cover letter is a conversation with that person.
Tip #2: Distinguish Yourself
Focus on what will move your resume to the top of the stack. Recruiters receive dozens, sometimes hundreds, of responses and resumes for each job posting. What will set you apart, land you on the shortlist, and win the interview?
Tip #3: Match the Requirements Point by Point
Succinctly and quickly address each major requirement in the job post. List your response in the same order as the job post, making the hiring manager’s work easier. That alone will distinguish you from the pack and help you come across as organized and collaborative.
Tip #4: Have a Cover Letter Template at the Ready
Create a shell text document with your top skills and experience written out, ready to go. Write and polish your experience highlights, significant accomplishments, your toolset expertise, and have all your URLs tested and ready to click.
Tip #5: Express Enthusiasm
Passion and joy for your work boosts morale in all organizational cultures. Hiring managers look for candidates who bring an extra dimension of engagement because it facilitates collaboration and teamwork. Your content should have an energetic and authentic tone.
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