How to write application letters which will be noticed
The best applications are usually three things; short, informative and to the point.
People who put jobs on ccp get hundreds, if not thousands of applications so if you have written them an essay on how great you are and why this is your perfect job and your life's ambition, you'll probably be over looked.
I would make the application no more than three or four sentences long, and although you are selling yourself, you must keep to what they have mentioned in the casting in regards to your relevance.
If you are applying to be a geeky character in a film, for example, all you really need to mention is that geeky is your casting and that you have film experience (if you do, if you don't then say that your are looking for film experience)
It could be as easy as, "I'm quite a geeky guy myself" or "I've been cast as a geek before" and already in a handful of words you have stood yourself out from people who have gone on and on about their geeky habits and those who haven't read the casting probably.
If it is based in Manchester, mention that you have a base there, if it is a comedy, mention you have experience in comedy.
The less words you use to show that you fit the casting, the easier it is to see that very fact.
I would also avoid mentioning anything specific in your CV unless of course they have asked you to. It takes up room in your application and it can be seen as showing off if it's unprovoked. When you send your application, they will look at your cv.
Be formal, if you know the company don't address it to the person who is head of the company as it is unlikely that he/she will be dealing with the emails.
Be grammatically correct. I'm aware that a lot of actors are dyslexic but it isn't difficult writing four sentences correctly when a job is at stake. And if in doubt ask someone to make sure your application makes sense.
Never assume you will get an audition (or the job) as no one wants to audition a cocky actor, and whatever is mentioned in the brief, try to reference it in your application.
If it's for sci fi, tell them you're a sci fi fan, if it mentions some of the plot, tell them your opinion of it as they will want to hire an actor who has an interest in their script as they do.
Don't mention reviews of shows you've done in the past as again you will look cocky and it makes your application look very long (and boring) don't say where you've trained as they care more about your ability to act than your training, remember a university degree doesn't make you a scholar, and lastly don't simply put 'I'd like to be considered'. Make it short enough to read in under 20 seconds and don't put the bare minimum as it looks as though you are just applying for everything and that you haven't read the brief.
Short applications take a maximum of five minutes to write, look like you have made a decent effort and just make a casting director's job a lot easier.
These guidelines are ones I'd highly go by for paid work and to a certain extent the unpaid opportunities, but as less people apply for them it will be easier for you to stand out.
This is from my experience as an actor applying for things and having quite a good response ratio and also as a casting director I've done for short films. Good luck.