Think before you post.

Advertising a job is the same as advertising anything else. It has to sell.

I haven’t met anyone who fundamentally disagrees with that last sentence – so I have to assume that most people have differing ideas of what selling actually is.

Essentially, selling is the process of persuading someone to do something.

What that means in recruitment advertising is getting a qualified candidate to respond to your job ad.

All things, be they ideas or products, services or jobs, need to speak to the self interests of the target customer. In this case, your target customer is someone who can do the job you’re advertising, aka the “qualified candidate”.

Next you have to ask yourself one critical question. It’s a question that is fundamental to how any job ad is written. Yet it is a question that most people don’t ask. That question is this:

“Is the person we’re looking for likely to be unemployed or employed?”

This has to be answered before anything else because it will dictate how much time, energy and guile you’ll need to spend in producing the ad.

If it’s a junior position paying under £30K then it’s statistically more likely to have a potential audience of actively looking qualified candidates than a senior or specialist role. Qualified candidates for those types of jobs are far more likely to need to be lured into expressing possible interest.

And that can only happen if it sounds better than the job they’re currently doing.

If you want your advert to be capable of persuading a qualified candidate (who doesn’t need another job) to enquire about your vacancy, then it’s going to have to quickly tell them why it might be better.

Because if you don’t do it quickly, they probably won’t keep reading.

EDITOR: Mitch delivers exceptional training for recruiters who want to write great job ads. For more info on those, go here.