How to Create a Killer Job Ad

The first thing we need to keep in mind when putting together a job ad is that it is, after all, an ad—and with ads, it’s often best to start with the end in mind and reverse engineer our way back to the ad’s content itself.

From finish to start. What is your outcome? Who are you trying to attract with your ad? Who is your ideal candidate? What experience, attitude, education, qualification, interests and beliefs about business does your ideal candidate have? These are all questions that must be answered prior to typing up your ad at all—in a perfect world, if you were to find exactly what your ad projected, then you’ll want to make sure that you’re expressing yourself correctly.

Have a conversational approach. If you were writing sales copy for a product or service, you would type up the content as if you were having a conversation with someone—this is the same approach that should be taken when putting together a job ad.

Put yourself in their shoes. Once you’ve outlined who your ideal candidate is, put yourself in their shoes and think about what it is they want in a fulfilling career. If you don’t know what these types of people are looking for, then ask! If you don’t know anyone in the field, reach out to someone on LinkedIn with that title and ask them what criteria they look for—and who knows, you may even get a referral out of it.

Sell the company and the opportunity. Our company recruits Salespeople globally in various industries—when we first chat with out clients to discover what their needs are and to learn more about their company, we’re sometimes faced with and individual who thinks there’s nothing special or unique about their company. After doing a quick search, we often find out great facts about the company like their reputation and awards as a high profit company or as a top employer in their space. Think about what makes your company different and express this in your ad. Don’t be afraid to talk about the exciting new product you’re about to launch—positivity and engagement are attractive qualities and will draw more candidates to you.

Have a great title. A title doesn’t seem like the most important thing, but it can make a world of difference. Instead of titling your job ad as “Sales Rep”, try something more exciting like, “Want to help us disrupt the Restaurant industry with our new software?” Experiment with this and you’ll see the difference between a dull, boring ad, and one that truly stands out.

Organize your ad for readability. Think about it—candidates are looking through hundreds of postings when searching for a new role and if your job as is all one big paragraph clumped together, chances are that no one is reading it—at least not entirely. Organize them into subsections like “A little about us”, “Who we’re looking for”, “What we’ll expect from you” and “How you’ll be compensated”.

Keep it concise. Stop adding things like “proficient in Microsoft Office” in your ad—we all know how to use Word and create a PowerPoint presentation. Make sure you include enough in your ad to give candidates a real sense as to what the role entails, but keep it concise enough for them to read through in one sitting.

Try out these tips and you’ll be sure to attract more of the candidates you’re looking for.

Navid Amin is Recruitment Consultant at RMSG in Toronto, Canada. Navid helps clients through designing and implementing hiring initiatives. He is passionate about sales, marketing and technology. Connect with him on LinkedIn at ca.linkedin.com/in/navidamin and follow him on Twitter at @Navid_Amin.