Write The Cover Letter For That Job In Social Media: How To Tips From A Regular Resume Screener

See this post in its original format on Girls in Tech.

So, you’re looking for a social media job. You want to be a content coordinator, a social media marketer, an editorial executive, whatever. You’ve polished up your resume, rounded up your references and picked up the perfect pair of interview shoes. You email every one of the social networking jobs on the web. And then you wait. And wait. And wait. And meanwhile, I’m sitting at my desk, sifting through resumes and wondering why we can’t find anyone halfway decent for social media openings at our company.

So why aren’t you interviewing with me? Well, assuming you’re a qualified candidate, then the problem is probably your cover letter.

You see, your cover letter is a lot more than a simple intro for your resume and references. It’s a first impression of your qualifications. And, in many cases, it’s the only impression that busy person on the other side of the screen is going to get before they decide to dismiss you completely.

So, how do compose a killer cover letter? Simple. Just follow the three P’s. Personality, profiles and proofreading.

Personality is probably the trickiest of the trifecta. Social media certainly ain’t a 9-5 gig, so when I’m screening resumes, I’m always aware that I’ll probably end up spending more time with the person we pick than I do with my friends and family combined. A little personality in your cover letter is a great barometer for me when making those decisions. But, show too much personality, and you might come across as unprofessional. So, I’ll gladly read colloquialisms, creativity and even the occasional quip. Emoticons and excessive exclamation on the other hand will probably get a less positive response.  And don’t forget, one person’s treasured triple-exclamation-point sign off might just be another one’s personal pet peeve. (Hint, hint).

If you’re applying for a job in social media, the profiles part should be the easiest part of this equation. Just make sure you include links to all of your social media sites. And you might as well include the personal and professional. Don’t think I’m not gonna google it if you don’t. When we’re hiring for a heavy social media job, we want to see people with a presence on the social web. So,I’m looking at your ratio of Twitter followers to followers, your number of tweets, your social aggregator accounts, your blog, your boyfriend’s blog — whatever I can find to prove that you know your way around the web. You don’t need to have your fingers in every profile pie, but you should have some background in this whole social networking scene. If you don’t, then you better have a backup plan for proving to me that you’re the person for the post.

Last, but not least, make sure you proofread. If I had a nickel for every typo, grammar gaffe, misused word or spelling mistake I’ve seen in cover letters over the past year, I could probably afford to just fund the invention of a robot who would cover all of our open job posts, so I’d never again have to stare in disbelief at the cover letter of a college graduate who can’t tell the difference between ‘their’ and ‘there.’ Seriously, I can’t stress the importance of proofreading your cover letters enough. This is also true for emails sent from mobile devices. If it’s the first piece of writing I’m going to be seeing from you, it’s worth a few extra minutes of meticulousness.

At the end of the day, crafting a killer cover letter comes down to this: you could have the best background of anybody on the web, but if your cover letter is awful, it’s like hiding a gorgeous gown under a crappy coat. What’s the point? If you’re going to invest in the gown, make sure you spend some time on the outerwear too. After all, it’s the first layer of your first impression. And, the first step towards scoring a chance to show off those interview shoes.


Save Money: Saving Secrets For The Geek Chic Chick

Nail Salon Money Save ManicureIt ain’t easy being fabulous — or at least being the kind of girl who aspires to be. And let’s face it, any girl raised on a steady diet of Sex and the City is going to want a spot at the fabulous feast. After years of thinking independent, successful woman was a phrase synonymous with manolos and manicures, it’s hard to crave anything but caviar wishes and champagne dreams.

Of course, if you happen to be a 20-something today, you know that champagne and caviar are more fantasy than reality. Let’s face it, fabulous these days is more recessionista than fashionista — especially if you’ve got a pricey gadget habit to feed along with that shoe addiction.

But, that doesn’t mean you can’t still indulge in the finer things in life too…you just have to master the art of one thing Carrie and the gals were always fabulous at: bargaining. And I don’t just mean haggling your way to a pricy pair of shoes by tapping into the salesman’s foot fetish. No, in this case bargaining means way more than that. It means finding a way to make your money count, stretch your dollar and all those other catchphrases that sell self help books.

It’s an art that requires more effort than just plopping down the nearest American Express card, but also provides way more satisfaction with every purchase. Instead of feeling guilty for spending on something self indulgent, you get to feel smart for spending your money…well…smartly.

It also just so happens to be an art that’s in my blood — thanks Jewish grandmothers!! So, I’m starting a new feature here on my lovely little blog where I share the tips and tricks of the geek chic chick trade. I’ve spent years trying to figure out how to get what I want without hearing my grandmother’s voice in my head, guilting me for spending too much on something “silly.” So, I figure, why not share the wealth?

And, if you appreciate my tips, feel free to send over some caviar. I’ll also take gratitude gifts in champagne form.

Tip: You Only Need One

Us geek chic chicks, we sure do like to type. From our phones to our full size ergonomic keyboards, we spend most of our time typing. Which, not surprisingly, is not conducive to keeping our nails looking their absolute best. I don’t know about anyone else, but I go through manicures more often than I update my facebook status, which is an awful lot of costly nailcare over the course of a year.

Of course, if I don’t get my nails done, I run them ragged biting and picking at them. It ends up being a big ol’ catch 22. Or at least it was — until the night my manicurist let me in on a little secret. Apparently, if you only get one coat of polish, the whole paint job lasts twice as long. I guess the single coat sticks to your nails better, so it’s less likely to chip. Or something. Anyway, the point is, I tried it and it totally works. Now, instead of having to go back for a new nailcare fix every week, I’m up to a mani every month or so.

I’m not gonna lie and say my biting habit doesn’t often land me in the chair more often than that, but during those rare times when I can go a few weeks without biting, I swear my manicures will last up to a whole month. Which saves about $60 a month if you go to my salon (Happy Nails at Santa Monica and La Brea). It’s a grooming godsend, and a total geek chic chick money saving tip.