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Don't Forget Your Audience When Writing Your Next Job Advertisement

By David Pearce, President,

Sales Personality Test - Don't Forget Your Audience When Writing Your Next Job Advertisement

Over the years our clients have often given us copies of the ads that they place in newspapers and on job boards. We look at the ads, job descriptions and the information at our Online Job Profile Tool because these are the pieces we analyze to set the clients unique Target Profiles for our sales assessment test.

From looking at many of the ads it seems to me that many of the people that write them are not taking into consideration the audience that they are hoping will read them. If the basic purpose of a job ad or job posting is to get a response (resume, phone call) from appropriately qualified people then many of the ads we see are not written in the correct "language".

Don't get me wrong. The ads are invariably very thorough in spelling out the necessary product knowledge, industry knowledge, skills, training, education and any other necessary technical qualifications. Where they fall short in my opinion is when they start to describe the working environment, position, company etc., they are often not written in a way that will push the "hot buttons" of the appropriate applicants.

When you are writing an ad try to put yourself in the mindset of the person that you ideally want to hire. Then write the ad in a way that mirrors the kind of environment that would appeal to that kind of person.

For example if you are trying to hire "hunter" type sales people don't forget what personality attributes make a hunter. These are people with a lot of self-confidence (ego), they like action and variety, they are very independent and dislike rules and details, they are very risk oriented. In short they have many "entrepreneurial" traits. Obviously it would make sense to describe the position along these lines using terms like fast pace, unlimited income, commissions and incentives, self-reliance, minimal rules procedures and details, fast growth, promotion opportunities etc.

On the other hand if you are trying to hire "farmer" or "customer service" types of sales people bear in mind that these are individuals who are largely motivated by altruistic traits. In other words they like to help other people. They have very little ego drive, they are warm and outgoing, they have a strong need for structure (rules, procedures), they have a fear of failing, they are the epitome of the team player. Obviously when hiring this type of sales person it will make sense to use terms like support, training, helping customers, teamwork, security, stability, career longevity etc.

Each sales position is unique. Think through the personality traits of the ideal person for that role or look closely at people who are performing it well already. Put yourself in their shoes and write your next ad from that perspective. You might get a better response.

David Pearce is the President of Established in 1986, is North America's #1 provider of pre employment assessment testing of sales candidates as well as sales profiling tools used to evaluate sales employees for sales competency. has over 1400 satisfied customers (97% re-order rate) who use our personality sales test to measure sales aptitude when hiring. Our online sales assessment test is customized to your unique criteria, fully automated, instantaneous, extremely accurate and very economical.