How to Write A Product Manager Cover Letter + Example

Product Management
Stephen GreetLast updated

After creating your product manager resume, it’s well worth writing your product manager cover letter if your prospective employer wants one. Not every recruiter or employer will want to read a complete cover letter, but it’s always wise to have one ready just in case.

Writing an excellent cover letter can:

  • Show that you’re enthusiastic about the job: Even if the employer usually skips right to resumes, they’ll notice that you put in the effort.
  • Provide standout metrics and qualifications they can quickly skim over, clarifying and enhancing your selling points.
  • Quickly establish a connection to the company with their own eye-catching mission statements or strategic name-dropping via your work history.

The proper format for a product manager cover letter

The last thing you want is your cover letter to look just like any other. You want your personality to enhance your alignment with the needs of each employer and show that you’re the picture-perfect match for the job description. The employer will be most interested in the candidate who seems like a good fit both in terms of skills and in personality.

But, even though it’s great to be unique and memorable, you don’t want to break the mold too drastically! Certain formatting guidelines and rules are still important to follow, lest you seem unprofessional.

Consider the following formatting guidelines that will ensure a level of polish:

  • Use a personal greeting that addresses the hiring manager directly. Do whatever research it takes to find their real name and always use that instead of generic openers like “Dear Hiring Manager”.
  • Open with a paragraph that demonstrates a connection between you and the company, your interest in the position, and how you're qualified. Show why you want to work for the company, and follow up with why the company would want that, too.
  • Include 2-3 paragraphs that spotlight your relevant skills, professional or educational experience, and clear-cut accomplishments. Sticking with one clear achievement per paragraph is best since you have to keep things at or under one page.
  • End with a closing paragraph that provides an overview of how your skills will benefit the company. And don’t forget to finish with a call to action that invites further communications and deeper discussion.

There are also some other simpler and more technical guidelines to follow:

  • Include your contact information—your name, address, and phone number. Additionally, you may include your email address and professional social media (such as LinkedIn), depending on the layout of your resume.
  • Mention the job title in the cover letter—and the sooner you do this, the better!
  • Include corresponding information about the person you’re contacting. Start with their name and company role, and you may need to include their inside address.
  • Write the current date in full formats, such as “June 30, 2022”, instead of shortening it.

Highlighting your skills & experience in your product manager cover letter

To create a truly excellent cover letter, each body paragraph must convey a clear and powerful message. After all, if you want to get invited to interview for a PM job, you need to make a great first impression. Any section you include in your cover letter should propel the reader forward, leaving them eager for more details rather than confused as to why you brought a specific topic up in the first place.

You can ensure that every body paragraph hits home by:

  • Reading up on what the employer is looking for, both in the job role and in a team member, so that you can display what they want.
  • Considering your skills and how they relate to those needs to fill a gap for the company.
  • Finding experiences/accomplishments that exemplify and convey these relevant skills as they relate to the employer’s current needs.

In order to clarify your skills and accomplishments effectively and present yourself as the ideal hire, you must:

Specify the exact skill you used:

Referring to your skills vaguely with terms like “computer skills” or “ability to talk to people” will sound generic and less compelling. Instead, use specific examples like analytics, leadership, communication, or teamwork.

You can comb through the job description and company vision statement to determine which product management skills will look best.

Clarify the exact benefits you brought to the company:

Skills only matter if they help! Employers want to see what you can do in a company setting—not just as an individual.

Provide examples of when you used your skills to solve specific problems, especially if they’re similar to the company’s current obstacles. This is another good reason to research the company since it gives you the chance to connect with their most forward-facing goals and exemplify their ultimate hire!

Use metrics like stats and data to convey these benefits:

Whenever you make a claim, you must back it up in order to sound credible and seem like you’re one step ahead of the competition.

Essentially, you should jump on the chance to answer key questions before the reader even has to ask them: Are there any percentages that quantify improvements you made in satisfaction rates or customer retention? Did you leave a positive impact with a new business strategy that measurably boosted company profits?

Quantifying any lasting, positive impact you left during your professional experience shows that you know what you’re doing and why.

Clarify when these accomplishments were made:

Any area where you can get specific in your cover letter is generally a good one. Clarifying that your accomplishments were recent—taking place during your last job, for example—will show that your abilities are both current and relevant.

This is especially important in technical fields where specific programming and software-related abilities can become obsolete in the blink of an eye: But a good PM needs to show current market and industry awareness, too, in order to strategize innovatively and effectively.

Other things to remember for your product manager cover letter

While you write your cover letter, remember that your goal is not to repeat the points on your resume but to go a step further. Luckily, you can rely on the following steps to ensure that your cover letter stands on its own effectively:

  • Read the job description carefully:
    Be sure to read the job requirements several times and in detail. Make a note of anything at all that’s relevant to your experience. Look for desired skills that you have or current company goals that align with your achievements.
  • Focus on accomplishments over skills:
    Skills will overlap between you and other candidates—focus more on your unique achievements. Ensure that your accomplishments are highly relevant to the company’s mission statement, job description, and current obstacles.
  • Keep it to just one page:
    We can't stress this one enough: You do not have room to drag on in your cover letter! Besides, every job values efficiency, so keeping your page-long letter concise is an excellent opportunity to demonstrate this skill.
  • Mirror the writing style of the employer/job description: Writing style and tone are both important to consider while you write. You don't want to sound too corporate when applying to a casual small business or vice versa.
  • Use simple, easy-to-understand language: Again, you don’t have much space or time to snag the reader’s attention, so using simplistic language when possible will help you deliver more information faster.

Bringing it all together

To start writing your own fantastic product manager cover letter, it can be beneficial to see one for yourself. Reading a good example piece can give you a good idea of how to break things down and format them nicely, as you can see below:

(123) 456-7891

901 Tailwater Dr.

Long Branch, NJ 07740

Barbara Henderson

Dream Company Hiring Manager

8190 South Greenrose Drive

Freehold, NJ 07728

July 09, 2022

Dear Ms. Henderson:

As Dream Company seeks a results-oriented product manager leader, I am eager to provide a guiding example of diligence, strategic organization, and data integration to skyrocket your team’s success. My natural agility within shifting market trends complements my task management and understanding of production infrastructures. I would love to use my combination of communication and strategic abilities to further Dream Company’s vision of bettering customers’ lives one day at a time.

My product manager journey began seven years ago at Previous Company’s production floor. My curiosity drove me to investigate how and why each task affected the product life cycle, and I refreshed my Google Analytics and programming skills. When I became a product manager at Previous Company, these technical skills enabled me to lead a team of 3 software developers to generate APIs that increased internal reporting speed by 29% and eliminated 11 manual reporting hours weekly.

I also revolutionized Previous Company’s response to drastically changing customer needs and market trends during the pandemic. I stepped up to provide the necessary guidance for our departmental teams to answer skyrocketing demands for online products. Working cross-collaboratively, I oversaw the creation of a digital learning platform that elevated returning customer volume by 46%.

My methodical and innovative mindset would pair seamlessly with my market adaptability, collaboration, and team leadership skills to make Dream Company stronger than ever. Thank you for taking the time to consider me for your product manager role, and please reach out anytime for more details on how I can further your vision of making customers’ lives better.

Best regards,

Peter Jones

Now that everything’s coming together, you’re probably eager to get started:

But to ensure that your cover letter is effective, your resume must look just as good and follow its stylistic guidelines. If you’re unsure where to start, using a good product manager resume template is one of the easiest and most reliable ways to ensure everything’s in order according to those guidelines. Soon you’ll be on the fast track to your PM dream job!

Further resources

An excellent cover letter to go with your spruced-up resume is a great way to prepare for an interview. Recruiters and potential employers may not spend long looking them over initially, but if you can snag their attention in just a few seconds with your credentials, you’ll be on your way to an interview.

There's plenty to consider before walking into an interview, so it pays to be prepared. Start by setting the tone and offering the right impression with your product manager cover letter and resume—you’ll be well on your way to nailing your first interview!

Learn everything you need to ace your product management interviews.

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