Tips for Writing the Best Job Ad

As a hiring manager or an entrepreneur, the success of your business weighs heavily on the people that you choose to hire. As your business grows, you need to be able to attract highly qualified, talented individuals that meet your specific needs. That means that you need to be able to write a compelling, persuasive job ad, one that gets results and narrows your search by attracting only the best and the brightest.

Below, we’ll talk about the many tips and tricks for how to write a successful job ad.

Funny server job ad
Funny job ad – photo credit: Bryan Nabong / Flickr

Distinguish the Job Ad from the Job Description

First things first, you might be asking yourself what’s the difference between a job ad and a job description. It’s exactly how it sounds.

A job description refers to a usually lengthy description of everything that a job entails including every bit of information that an applicant would need to know. Job descriptions are more time consuming to read and process, and can dissuade many potential applicants from applying. A job ad is a much more concise way to sell a job to potential applicants by listing only the most relevant, important information. Job ads should incite enthusiasm and get people excited about applying for the open position.

Be Selective

When you write a job ad, you need to limit the amount of information you put on the page. Instead of listing the job’s daily activities, try selling the job as a unique opportunity. Start by listing four or five essentials that describe the outcome of the position, or what the applicant can expect to get out of the job. For example, look at theses two examples and ask yourself which one is the most effective.

  • Employee will be responsible for analyzing user data for sales and marketing research.
  • Work with user data to increase sales and implement new marketing strategies.

The first item tells the applicant what’s expected of them on a daily basis. It can feel as if you’re already telling them what to do. While the second item shows the applicant how their position will fit into the company as a whole, and why their work with be important. You’re asking the applicant to bring his or her unique skills to the table. It’s a motivational approach that empowers the applicant to do their best.

Using bullet points is also a great way to make the information easier to read. Applicants have a habit of merely skimming important information, racing through the application until they get to the end.

Language is Key

When describing your company, include information that sells your business to the applicant. Use phrases that imply innovation, success, and inclusion. You don’t want to appear snobbish, but make the applicant feel as if this is the right place for them. As another example, read below and see which phrase sounds the most appealing.

  • Joe’s Marketing Firm uses customer data and research to sell products for various clients throughout Southern California.
  • At Joe’s Marketing Firm, we pride ourselves on creating new ways to harness customer information to connect our clients with their local communities and enhance brand equity.

The first phrase is a flat, simplified statement that tells applicants that this is just another marketing firm. The second statement shows applicants what makes Joe’s Marketing Firm unique, their goals as a company, and how they intend to achieve them.

Cool job ad's call-to-action (CTA)

Don’t Forget a Call to Action

Lastly, when you write a job ad, you need to include a call to action that gets applicants to apply. Come up with a relatively simple way for applicants to send their information. Whether it’s via email, in person, or using an online format, don’t let the applicant feel as if they’re wasting their time. Try going through the application process yourself. If you find yourself re-entering the same information multiple times or losing focus, you probably need to simplify your strategy.

Many employers make the mistake of thinking that it’s up to the job applicant to sell themselves to the company. And while that is true during the interviewing stage, the only way to get solid candidates into the interview is for a company to first sell itself to the audience of potential applicants.

Writing an effective, enticing job ad is just one of the ways to get applicants excited about your company, and to take the time to go through the application process. So, next time you’re hiring don’t simply create a list of duties and toss it up on Craigslist. Taking the time to carefully craft your job ad can save you an exorbitant amount of time, energy and money, down the line.