This is The Best Ad

“The best ad is the ad the client will support.”

That’s my answer to this question:

“What advice would you give to a young person who just started a new job as a copywriter for a radio station?”

Actually, that’s only part of the answer. Here’s the full advice in an open letter.

To the unnamed young copywriter,

Very soon you will crack the code on how to write great copy. Of this, I have no doubt. And when that day comes and you are celebrated among your peers as an exquisite creative, only half the battle will be won.

Because here’s the thing; you can be the greatest copywriter in the world, but if your client doesn’t believe in your ad then they’re not going to spend their ad dollars to air it. And then no one will hear your ad.

Which means the best ad is the ad the client will support.

So yes, study writing. Fall in love with writing. Become the best writer you can be. And at the same time learn persuasion. Learn empathy. See the world from your client’s perspective. Meet them where they are. And then guide them to why they too should love your ads.

Remember, being a small business owner is scary. They’ve built their business with blood, sweat, and tears. Their family depends on the business to make ends meet. Their friends and employees and their employees’ families depend on the business to make ends meet.

And so, when they scrape together what few dollars they can to advertise, honor the trust they put in your hands. Don’t despise their fear or apprehension. It’s valid. Instead, show them you understand what’s at stake.

Now go. Put your foot to the path.

You have a bright future ahead of you.

– Zac Smith, VC