Ad Review: Automattic’s Search for PHP Developers

As a WordPress freak (self-proclaimed!), I read far too many WordPress sites, including deeply techy, developer-targeted sites.

Thus it’s not surprising that WordPress targets me for ads to work for them as a developer. Here’s one ad that I saw:


Well, I’m not a developer but I am an ad guy. So let’s talk about this ad, as an ad.

Would it work? Will it be effective? Only Automattic (the makers of WordPress) and their ad team know. And Google (or whichever platform it is) of course.

But let’s see what is good and bad about this ad; and in the online advertising world, “good” and “bad” mean “more likely to be effective” and “less likely to be effective”.

Here’s the good:

  • Self-evidently clever to a developer: looking for a developer by showing code that a developer will understand.
  • Clever enough to make a developer smile or perhaps smirk; but not complex enough to scare off the younger or low-end developers (who they may be targeting).
  • The CTA is clear and stands out — and perfect in the context of an ad. One word; and a bright blue box in an ad that is just white, with touches of black and grey (and of course the blue in the ‘o’ of ‘Automattic’)
  • The row of logos on the bottom gives it credibility, but those usually end up distracting the reader from the focus. But the fact that they’re greyed out limit the distraction.

So there are all these clues that it is a great ad. What about the bad of this ad?

Let’s be direct: I can’t find any. As you know from this series, I love mocking bad ads, but I just can’t find anything here to be improved on. Perhaps this is the be-all and end-all of ads?!

Or on the other hand, perhaps I’m just exhausted so I’m not clever enough to find any defects. I’ll check back in the morning!

Related Posts