Dying in all communications is the strategy of playing it safe in tone and content. This is the era of attention-deficit-disorder, along with increased competition for the little bits of attention available for commercial messaging.
No surprise, a public relations agency in New Jersey and a data analytics firm in Texas both came to me. They fired their previsous vendor. What they needed were re-writes of "boring" subject heads and first paragraphs.
You bet, this trend affects how you strategically plan and put together your cover letters for jobs and for contract assignments. You can't just go through the motions.
This starts with what you put in the Subject Head of your email. It has to differentiate you from the 300 others answering the ad or the 50 others sending unsolicited pitches. No, it can't be cute, smell of a gimmick or outrageous. What it does have to do is transmit why you are the best fit for the position. "Seasoned social media writer" doesn't cut it.
What could be more effective are:
"Planned, Executed Campaigns for 10 Companies (open for results)"
"Boosted Engagement 45%"
"Increased traffic 54% in 12 days"
The first sentence and the first paragraph have to do two things. One, communicate how enthusiastic you are about the opportunity. Two, hammer your unique edge, that is, why you are the best fit.
Your resumes (yes, you should have multiple ones) have to reinforce the exciting story you are telling in your Subject Head and cover letter.
TIP: Experiment with diverse approaches to how you put yourself out there in email. It required about six versions for me to come up with the pitch letter which now gets a 23% response rate.