The Most Important Ads You Will Ever Write
The most important ads you will ever write are the help wanted classifieds that will bring the right people into your life and will enable your career to take off like a rocket and keep you in orbit.
Is it a good idea to outsource the copy to a puffed-up, high-priced headhunter or a $22K junior assistant in the HR department?
When I first became president and editor of Target Marketing in 1993, the magazine was losing torrents of money. Two huge tasks faced me: giving the book editorial credibility and finding a few good sales reps that could convince old advertisers to come back and new advertisers to come onboard.
With the enthusiastic endorsement of a local Philadelphia publisher, we hired one of his telephone reps who wanted to become a full-fledged advertising salesman. He was a presentable young man who performed well for us on the telephone, so we decided to give him the opportunity to start calling on advertisers.
I took him with me on the road to introduce him to potential advertisers in the south—Little Rock, Ark., Oklahoma City and Dallas.
Midway through the trip, I discovered that he was a cocaine addict.
“Hiring the wrong person costs you three times their annual salary,” states the headline of an advertisement for the $487 software program, “Hire the Best.” The copy states, “A $50,000 employee costs you $150,000. There’s also lost opportunity cost ... plus lost business, potential customers and momentum!”
Fortunately, we found this druggie early on and dealt with the situation quickly. Had this goofball been let loose in the direct marketing community, our entire turnaround effort could easily have been scuttled. Given the success of Target Marketing and the subsequent magazines and online products started by my wife, Peggy Hatch, over the past 15 years, the collapse of Target Marketing would have resulted in lost revenues of $40 million or more so far.