So, you are in sales. And you have been pretty successful. But now, it is time to move on to a bigger and better position – perhaps with a larger company; perhaps to one whose products or services you can be more passionate about. Maybe even to a company with a larger base pay and commission.
You have written down your resume, reviewed and revised it with meticulous accuracy and now it is exactly as you want it to be. It’s time to explore openings and get that resume sent out.
You have just one more task – those cover letters. Note that the word “letters” is plural. Because just like a resume, your cover letters will have to be unique for each position. But there are some general tips you should follow, if you want that cover letter to grab the attention of a recruiter or hiring manager.
General Tips for a Sales Cover Letter
Understand that it will be read. A short cover letter serves to alert the reader that you have something to offer and that your resume deserves a look. It will be read, and it will constitute the first impression that the reader has of you. You must engage immediately.
Don’t “Summarize” Your Resume. Instead, expand on your resume. Look through that resume and find the education and background experience that uniquely relates to this position, and focus on that.
It’s Not About You at All. It’s about what you bring to the table that will enrich the organization. Speak in terms of the future that the company can see with you a part of it. This means you will clearly show what you are capable of as these things relate to their needs. You may even want to include a couple of numbers related to your sales successes or awards you have earned for those successes.
Dump the Fluff. You don’t have space for talking about being a “team player,” or having wonderful interpersonal relationship skills. Everyone says that. Be different. Focus on sales skills that you have and major successes.
Speak in the Company’s “Voice”. Before you write a cover letter for a specific position, get on that company’s website and read. Every organization has a culture and a tone. If it is a progressive startup, you have lots of flexibility to be creative; if it is a traditional, conservative organization, you need to use that tone of voice.
A Template is Just the Beginning. It is fine to have a template to guide you through your cover letter creation. But remember it is only a template that will keep you organized. Every bit of a cover letter must be uniquely designed for the organization and the specific sales position.
Sales Cover Letter Example (Word version)
An Example Sales Cover Letter (text version)
36 Corporate Drive
August 15, 2018
Delivering Growth in Territorial Sales
Dear Ms. Watts,
I was excited to see your posted opening for a territorial sales manager in your southwestern U.S. region. My experience is in this region where I have grown my current employer’s sales to the multi-million-dollar level over the past five years.
Among the accomplishments and successes that relate directly to your opening are the following:
- Closed $5.4 million in sales during 2018 for current employer
- Awarded Top Performing Salesperson for both 2017 and 2018
- Exceeded sales goals by more than 20% for the past two years
- Trained 4 new entry-level salespersons who have already proven their successes
The attached resume provides further details on my work experience and educational credentials.
I know that company ABC plans to expand into new District CBS. This project is a match for my personal and professional interests to apply my extensive knowledge in this region and revive industry connections that I have previously established. Further, given my knowledge of the territory and salesforce development, there are ideas I would love to share with you to make this initiative an absolute success.
I look forward to discussing with you and may be reached as indicated above. Thank you for your time.
Note how this is a brief cover letter. The applicant doesn’t waste time on generalities and directly appeals to his “competitive advantage” – past successes and deep familiarity of the new territory. This cover letter is built around the success story of the candidate – a good trick to use for positions in sales.
The focus is on what can be done for the company, given the candidate’s record of success, and a clear statement that the candidate is already thinking about what he can bring to the table. This will intrigue a reader, and that is exactly what you want.
Now go on and try composing your own cover letter. If you are feeling stuck with the layout part, do check our professional resume + cover letter template bundles. They are a nice “add-on” to cement your personal brand and file a memorable application.