How to Write a Marketing Cover Letter
What Is a Marketing Cover Letter?
When writing a cover letter, you are addressing the person who will be shortlisting candidates and ultimately deciding who secures the position on offer.
The decision-maker is likely to have received a large pile of resumes, often all with very similar marketing skills and qualifications, so it’s the cover letter that will help them make their choice.
A marketing cover letter provides you with an opportunity to add personality to your application and build on the content of your resume. It is your chance to go into more detail about your specific marketing skills, experience, abilities and the value you can bring to the company.
The key to producing an effective cover letter is to create something engaging that flows naturally. Simply listing your experience using buzzwords with generic phrases is unlikely to inspire the employer.
Even if you haven’t had a marketing job before, by giving details of the experience you have that directly links to the skills and abilities required for the job, you demonstrate your potential.
While a cover letter could sway an employer to shortlist you, it could also put them off, so it is worth taking the time to get your marketing cover letter right.
What Should a Great Marketing Cover Letter Include?
A marketing cover letter requires you to effectively use your marketing skills to sell yourself. It is your chance to show the employer that you can convince a consumer to buy a product, by applying your marketing abilities to convince them you are the person for the job.
Depending on the job, you could hone in on your technical skills, or talk more generally about how your experience informs the marketing approach you take today.
Your cover letter should include:
- A clear explanation of why you believe you are a great fit for the role
- Details of your career goals and a note on why this job is on the right track for you in terms of personal development
- Specific experience and accomplishments that directly relate to the requirements listed in the job description
- Specific details as to why you are excited about the job being advertised, and the company
The job description and person specification will be your guide for which key competencies and details of your experience to include.
You don’t need a degree to secure a position in marketing; without a degree, you can go into the industry as a marketing intern or marketing assistant and work your way up.
The likely requirements for a marketing role, and therefore those that you should reference, are listed below, although bear in mind that the key competencies and skills will differ slightly depending on the type of marketing job.
- Critical thinker
- Capable of seeing the bigger picture
- Technically savvy
- Can work effectively as part of a team
- A good understanding of finance
- Strategic thinker
- An understanding of how business works
- An understanding of customer relations
- Commercial awareness
- An eye for detail
- Project management
- Excellent communication
- Excellent writing, grammar and punctuation
- Proficiency in using key social media platforms, Excel and Word
- Basic design skills (for example, adjusting an image in Photoshop)
How Might a Cover Letter Differ for Different Marketing Roles?
A marketing coordinator assists the marketing manager and wider marketing team in promoting products and services through marketing campaigns.
A marketing coordinator cover letter should talk about any work experience in marketing you have undertaken.
A marketing internship can last from two weeks to a year and is open to those who are currently enrolled in a degree course.
Marketing internships are particularly popular with large companies that also offer graduate training schemes.
A cover letter for a marketing internship should confirm that you are enrolled in a degree course and stress your passion for the subject.
Marketing Graduate Training Scheme
A marketing graduate training scheme is for those who have already graduated.
Training schemes commonly lead to a position being offered within the same company.
In a cover letter for a marketing graduate training scheme, you should give details of your degree course.
Hopefully, you achieved a 2:1 or above in your degree and can mention this (the majority of graduate training schemes require a 2:1 or above).
A marketing manager usually heads up a marketing team. However, sometimes the role involves managing the company’s marketing, rather than managing people.
A marketing manager cover letter should:
- Give details of your experience in marketing
- Give details of your management qualifications or experience
- Give details of your postgraduate degree in marketing if you have one
- Give details of any Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM) qualifications you have
A digital marketer promotes sales and activities using digital marketing methods.
A digital marketing cover letter should:
- Reference a relevant degree you many have (in journalism, creative design, e-business, media)
- Go into detail about your excellent IT skills
- Demonstrate your genuine interest in digital platforms and methods, and excitement for digital media
- Give proof of your knowledge of social media platforms and those that are emerging
- Demonstrate your awareness of digital techniques for creating media, such as photo editing or video
- Give details of any Institute of Digital Marketing (IDM) qualifications you have
- Demonstrate your strong digital interest by giving details of a personal blog, website or similar
How to Write Your Marketing Cover Letter
In this instance, you would address the letter to Ms Walker.
Occasionally, the company will only give a postal address (for example,‘Applications, 29 Long Street’), in which case you could start the letter with ‘Dear Sir/Madam’ or 'Dear Hiring Manager'.
Where possible, it is best to show that you have taken a genuine interest in the company by finding out the best person to address.
Use the first paragraph to present yourself to the employer, create a good impression and capture their interest.
Sell yourself by including details that show how much you have achieved and how well suited you are to the role.
Having achieved a first-class honors degree in marketing, I am ready to embark on an exciting career. I believe my passion for sport, together with my two years’ experience boosting awareness for incredible brands, makes me a strong candidate for the role of Marketing Manager at Sport Central.
Tell the employer why you are a good fit for the role. You can convince them of this by detailing your relevant experience, ensuring it supports the job description’s key competencies.
In my position as Marketing Executive at Creative Duez, I demonstrated a deep understanding of B2C marketing. I implemented vital steps in the sales process and marketing campaigns to gather information on our customers and get to know their buying habits. For example, by adding an ‘opt-out’ communications check box as part of the online checkout, I boosted our mailing list by 60% over three months.
Go into more detail about your qualifications. Do not simply list them – you likely have an application form or resume that gives the employer those details.
Here is an example of how to refer to your qualifications while keeping the flow,
I believe that a degree in advertising has given me the tools to be able to communicate effectively through print and digital media, conveying a wide range of messages through simple branding and few words. What I lacked in terms of technical marketing ability and knowledge of specific marketing phrases after graduating, I gained through completion of CIM’s Foundation Certificate in Professional Marketing.
Why should the employer hire you? What can you do for the organization? How can you help to push the company forward?
An example of how you might present this is,
I enjoy all aspects of marketing, but my passion lies in the evaluation of campaigns, SEO and advertising to ensure the correct mediums are being used in the most effective way for maximum impact and traffic. I pride myself on my ability to interrogate and analyze data, tracking ROI, customer behavior and marketing performance to ensure the company is getting the best possible exposure.
Time to end the cover letter by leaving the employer with a lasting impression of you and giving them something to hold on to when looking through the cover letters of other applicants.
Politeness is important; be sure to sign off thanking the employer for their time and show your interest in progressing to the next stage.
Strategic thinking, adaptability and an acute understanding of customer relations have made me a successful marketer with a proven track record for outstanding campaigns. I believe this, coupled with my dedication, passion and drive makes me an excellent candidate for this role.
Thank you very much for taking the time to read about my experience and skills; I would love to be considered for the next stage of this recruitment process.
Marketing Cover Letter Top Tips
Here are our top tips for writing a marketing cover letter:
Take a look at the key skills and person specification in the job description, note down the keywords used (words like ‘campaign marketing’, ‘strategy’, ‘SEO’, ‘communication’) and try to use them in your cover letter in relation to your expertize.
Don't repeat your resume. Remember that the employer will also have your application form or resume that lists your experience. Try not to waste valuable word count by repeating the same information in the cover letter.
Keep things relevant. Don’t feel you need to talk in-depth about your most recent role if it doesn’t give many examples of why you are a good fit for the job. Focus on the relevant experience you have.
Quantify your achievements. Facts and data will give the employer indisputable evidence of your ability, so include them where you can.
Make a note of all the buzzwords mentioned in the job description and use them (directly linking a requirement to your experience) in your cover letter. For example, instead of saying ‘increasing the company’s exposure’, you might use the term ‘brand awareness’. Some companies use screening systems (known as applicant tracking systems) on cover letters before even looking at them, so it’s important to use words that will be picked up and move you to the ‘maybe’ pile.
Keep it clean. Get someone else to read your cover letter so that any spelling mistakes or grammatical errors are picked up.
If you are making a career change, be sure to reference it in your cover letter. For example, if all your experience has been B2B marketing (business to business) and you are applying for a B2C position (business to consumer), talk about your desire for changing focus and your long-term career goals.
Do your research. Take some time to get to know the company, specifically how they market their products or services.
Focus on marketing skills and qualificatons. You should mention any courses you have completed recently to show that you have your finger on the pulse where changing trends and new technologies are concerned.
Example Marketing Cover Letter
13 Tulip Avenue
Atlanta, Georgia 44444
Home: 777-777-7777 / Cell: 777-777-7777
8th November 2020
Ms. Melanie Parker
5888 Market Avenue
Atlanta, Georgia 44444
Re: Marketing Assistant position advertised on WikiJob
Dear Ms Parker,
Having recently been awarded ‘marketing student of the year’ at my university, I feel well placed to apply for a position that will allow me to put my experience into practice. I believe my business acumen and commercial awareness, coupled with my lifelong love of kites, make me a strong candidate for this role.
During my marketing internship last summer, I worked closely with external creative agencies to produce a series of adverts and a brochure promoting the company offering. I led the departmental focus group that gave initial feedback on ideas we had for the adverts and brochure, and collated responses to come up with a proposal for content. I wasn’t fazed by the fact the focus group was made up of experienced marketing professionals; I am confident in my ability and thrive on surrounding myself with individuals I can learn from.
I graduated last month with a 2:1 in marketing and have just enrolled in a summer school run by my local newspaper for budding marketers. Throughout my degree, I have taken every opportunity on offer to me; in 2018 I traveled to Germany on a sandwich placement where I spent two months learning about B2C digital marketing strategies with the Association of Marketing. On completion of the course, I was awarded a certificate with the highest level of distinction.
In my first marketing role I plan to immerse myself in an area I already feel comfortable in and use all of the skills and experience I have gained to date to help move the organization forward. I have been flying kites since I was two – I am a proficient kite flyer with a level four in kite ability. I know the products you sell extremely well, I know what makes a kite flyer tick, and I have my own ideas on the direction in which the industry should progress. Given that 98% of Rainbow Kites’ sales are online, I believe my interest in SEO and Google Analytics would be beneficial.
I am a self-starter, I work well under pressure and I relish a challenge. I would be honored to be able to use the wealth of marketing knowledge I have absorbed over the last four years to help drive forward a company I am genuinely interested in. I look forward to hearing from you and progressing to the next stage of the recruitment process.
A cover letter should leave the employer excited to study your resume and find out more about the experience and abilities you have mentioned.
The best cover letters are those where a lot of preparation has been done beforehand:
Start by taking a highlighter to the job description and marking all keywords and requirements.
When writing your cover letter, you can then tick off everything you have covered. That way you ensure you don’t leave the employer guessing as to whether you have relevant experience in a certain area, or a specific qualification required.
Research the company so that you have a good grasp on its culture and how that informs the type of marketing it does.
For example, they might be all about collaboration – in which case you could reference a marketing campaign you were involved in that required participation from lots of different organizations.
Or, they might be focused on short, sharp, powerful campaigns, in which case you could talk about a campaign where there was a heavy focus on the statistics and success based on clicks and so on.
Does the language they use suggest they are a fun company or is it more formal? Mirror their tone and style in your cover letter whilst keeping it professional and tidy.
When you think you’re finished, read through and scrutinize every detail to ensure you have made the most of every sentence. The employer will likely receive hundreds of cover letters telling them that a candidate is ‘passionate about communication’ and ‘excited by engaging campaigns’, so try to find a different approach and make your marketing cover letter the one that’s remembered.