Monday, July 25, 2005

Job Hunting For Dummies - Making Your Cover Letter Memorable

File this post under for what it's worth... don't know if I'd really recommend any of this, but read on.

The other day I had written about making contact with stations in Palm Springs. At the time I was undecided about my future... do I stay in news, or do I move to LA. This was at the start of my last semester.

Anyway, I wanted to separate myself from the stacks of tapes I know stations get, so aside from my cover letter I added a note for the newsroom secretaries that went something like:

Like you, I work in a newsroom and I know you don't always get a chance to get lunch or dinner. So I've attached this dollar bill to for an emergency vending machine run. All I ask is that you make sure the news director takes a look at my tape.
Apparently no one station had a sense of humor cause they sent the dollar back. But when I talked to the news director the other station, he explained that (being a small market and all) he opens his own mail. He thought this was hilarious and said he'd love to sit down with me if I ever made it out. So when planning spring break for Vegas and LA, we made a stop in Palm Springs.

When I moved to LA, there were a couple of opportunities to go there and get back into news, but the money and timing just was never right.

Advertising legend Leo Burnett said "make it memorable" and in this case I did.

I had a boss who let me watch tapes with her and in critiquing some of the letters, she told me she'd love to see someone with enough confidence to write in crayon in big letters "Watch my tape, I'm good!" It would make you memorable.

There is an urban legend about a young reporter sending his tape in a pizza box. Unfortunately it was not an unused box, or so the legend goes... so stuff like this can clearly misfire if not thought out.

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