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Journalism Cover Letter Sample

Journalists must be able to tell their news stories in a way that’s compelling to a prominent audience. That means when you’re selling the story of your work history and skills, your cover letter should be equally as compelling. A journalist's cover letter quality can play a big role in whether or not you get hired. Here’s how to write a cover letter that gets you in the newsroom.

Journalism Cover Letter Example

Tips for Writing Your Journalism Cover Letter Using This Example

Start by creating a great cover letter header. This should include your name, contact information, phone number, email address and professional social media, such as your LinkedIn. Ensure you also address the hiring manager by their full name, rather than using phrases like “To whom it may concern” or “Dear hiring manager.” Once the introduction is completed, you can move on to the rest of the cover letter format.

1. First paragraph: Introduce yourself with a hook and list your best achievements

You want to open with the biggest qualification or achievement you have. This hooks the recruiter in, making them more interested in reading the rest of your resume. In this sample cover letter, the applicant mentions that he reported on the Times Square ball drop in January 2022 and uses this as the reason for his movement from largely news-based journalism to much more entertainment-based journalism. He also mentions some experiences he had as a news-based journalist, like reporting on White House press releases.

2. Second paragraph: Give more information about how you’re the best fit for the job

Now that you know the hiring manager is reading your cover letter, you can list your top skills and achievements. This second paragraph is where you can express why you’re the best person for the job posting, using as many skills as possible from the job description itself. Here, the applicant mentions his experience as a news journalist, allowing him to discuss news stories entertainingly and indicates his career trajectory toward an entertainment journalist.

3. Third paragraph: Call to action

In the third paragraph, you want to complete the cover letter with a call to action. Remind the hiring manager why you’re the best person for this new job, then end the letter with a request for a job interview. The applicant states, “Let me know when we can sit down and talk about my experiences.” Sign off with a professional ending, such as “Sincerely.”

FAQ: Journalism Cover Letters

Writing a cover letter for your journalism job is always a good idea. A resume is an important part of your job application. Still, in a cover letter, you get to show off your writing skills, talk more in-depth about information from your resume, and showcase that you can make a compelling piece of content, even if that content is about yourself. Plus, the ResumeNerd cover letter builder makes it an easy process.

You should aim to keep your cover letter between 1/2 and 3/4 of a page long. This is long enough to fill out a page but not so long that a hiring manager might not want to look through the whole thing; a cover letter longer than a single page tends to make a hiring manager unlikely to read it. Your cover letter also functions as one of your writing samples, so make sure you proofread to tighten up the wording and avoid typos.

You don’t need years of experience to become an accomplished journalist. If you don’t have much experience, then you can list other types of experience, such as copywriter or newsroom experience in other capacities. You can also focus more on your education and skills than your experience.