How to write ADS that work
Too many ads are just not interesting enough for people to want to read till the end of the copy, let alone apply to it! Perhaps one reason for this is that many consultants have never been taught how to write ads or they consider it a boring administration task that just needs to get done. This has been exacerbated by having big Seek ad numbers available particularly in the last 12 months so consultants think “I'll just stick an ad in and see what happens” and then they're surprised when they get little quality or quantity response.Here are 4 reasons why you need to write good ads:
- It is part of your marketing strategy; believe it or not but everything you put out adds or detracts to your company's image/branding. There is no such thing as neutrality or anonymity in the age of Google.
- It determines proportionally how much money you will earn! If you get good candidates, you will make more placements (if you know what to do with them)
- Candidates will be attracted to you and your company because you know how to attract the right job vacancies and you can prove it (if you don't make good companies sound attractive, then good candidates will go elsewhere which then means good companies will go elsewhere too).
- You prove your invaluable expertise to your clients by attracting talent that they may not be able to attract themselves.
Here are the essential ingredients of a killer ad using the A-I-D-A formula:
- A – Attention; Some company names may be enough to grab the eye of the reader but there is probably only a handful in each industry and you may not be allowed to use the company name in the ad so some consultants will write some boring generic term like “multinational company …….” You can attract people's attention by using a catchy headline e.g. “Lord of the Rings” for a telecommunications company or you can use “Fast Cash for Christmas” for a casual position. Your aim here is to catch the Attention of the reader so use a clever and catchy 'grabber'.
- I – Interest: Once you have their attention you need to keep it and we know from reader behavior that they will read the top 20% of your ad before they decide whether or not to continue, so avoid:” to secure this position you need……” Instead put all your benefits in the top 20% of your copy. Remember you are selling the vacancy and the company and people buy on benefits, so trot them all out e.g. one day off per month to do charity work (great for Gen Y's and Z's), flexible working hours (great for parents), best bonuses in the industry (great for sales people) etc. If you can list min 3-5 benefits in the top 20% of copy, you will keep them reading on. Some consultants say; “I do not know what the benefits are” which means you have not done your job properly. You always need to ask your client:”why should someone join your company i.e. what's in it for them”
- D – Desire; Now they are interested enough to buy, tell them if it's for them. List the job and what the main function of the role is e.g. “have you always wanted to work for an leader in the growing Sustainability industry and make a real difference?” whether it's for an administration, accounting or sales role. Now they know whether or not they want to pursue the role and also whether they have the skills to perform the role.
- A – Action; make this an urgent call to action so they apply to you first! It may be “call or SMS me NOW so I can tell you even more about the job before it disappears!” Way too many recruiters put “email your resume to……” Create urgency and FOMO!
If you want to test the validity of above formula; pull out some job listings and pick out your favourite ones and you will discover they have followed above formula. So next time you write an ad, make it a killer ad!