I am a chronic job-hunter, in good times and in bad. Today I’m going to share with you the most hilariously BAD advertisement for a copywriter that I have ever seen, and break it down line by line. Because what else are weekends for?
I blacked out the name of the company to protect the guilty, but I’m sure you could just Google some of these amazing sentences and figure it out if you really wanted to.
Okay, so first off: this is a job for a copywriter, but right away, they let you know that a copywriter is explicitly NOT what they want. Exciting stuff! You know that these guys are gonna keep you on your toes.
“We want someone who reads Whitman during their lunch break, then references him in a billboard.” Whitman, kind of quaint, but okay. A billboard, though? What is this company’s target demographic, an AP literature class?
“Someone who asks for a second check from the waiter because they scribbled all over the first.” How whimsical! This person has no use for the petty concerns of the rest of the world. That waiter should recognize how lucky he is to serve the most creative copywriter in Naperville, Illinois–a person who tries their best to sign the credit card receipt but just can’t help scrawling genius ideas all over it (their pen barely keeps up with their brain, after all). Oops!
“Someone with strong opinions about beat poetry.” NOPE, GET THE FUCK ON OUTTA HERE.
“We want the writer who describes bad breath as ‘the aftermath of a grizzly bear fight.’ Not ‘smelly.’” Can someone explain to me how a grizzly bear fight pertains to halitosis? What even is the connection there?
“We want the writer who knows that the dignity of movement of an iceberg is due to only one ninth of it being above water.” Can you recognize a Hemingway quote? Better yet, can you recognize an INCORRECT Hemingway quote? (The guy said one-eighth, not one-ninth, but whatever.) Congratulations! You are well read in white dude literature, which is all you need to be a great mid-level copywriter.
“Let’s make something that will sell beef jerky to vegans.” I would be more impressed by copy that could compel vegans to buy sirloin steaks, but sure, let’s go with dried meat that you buy at the gas station during a road trip. (Also, enough with the vegan hate, am I right? They’re not bothering you! Leave them alone.)
“If you are an ink-stained badass…” Yeah, no, like every student in my undergrad English program fancied themselves one of these. Including me! That is who you are attracting with this posting, my friends: the young, the eager, and the deluded.
Okay. I can’t really argue with the “You should be exceptional at” section. Standard stuff. Let’s move on to “things that will start the conversation:”
“Experience creating mind-blowing, sky shattering work in digital, video and print that turns your audience into card-carrying, flag-waving brand zealots.” (Hitler. You are describing Hitler.)
“Don’t be shy if you have mad skills from elsewhere.” Well, they DID say you shouldn’t be a copywriter.