Jevon Allen Gets a Bottle of Wine from Leasing News

by Kit Menkin

It was not until a discussion this last Friday with Jevon Allen of Advance Recruitment Solutions in Redwood City, California that we began to understand what we should be doing in our “help wanted” section.

“I'm with a recruitment advertising agency, and the gist of my job is to advertise companies positions, from web to print to internal and the list goes on. Bank of the West is one of our biggest clients and they let us know about leasing news,” he said.” This agency has been around since '93 and has never used until April.”

I found out that Sharon Green at Bank of the West had recommended us, and I think she also may have heard about us from Trinity, who used to advertise directly before they got bought out by Bank of the West. We got results for Trinity according to their sales manager Nick Gibbens. While Steve Crane works for the leasing company and is on our advisory board, he doesn't make advertising recommendations, and even though our good friend Jerry Newell is executive vice-president of the bank and chairman of Trinity, and tells us he reads Leasing News, often on BART, going back and forth between offices, he is too high up to even get into the circuit.

In going over what Jevon Allen told me, I did not realize the ads from Dell come from an advertising agency. They have come back about six times as they say we get them results. Looking more into it, so do others, I found out. Maria who does the designing of the ads told me she is often asked if we give an advertising agency discount. She has answered no in the past, as she did not know what it meant.

She really designs and works on the ads and then runs them by me to see if I like them ( color or lay-out.)

In my e-mails with Jevon Allen, regarding the Bank of West ad, he said it “...was a bit pricey. I believe it's because you guys take on 2 different ways of purchasing and combine them. You take the aspect of print advertising by charging by the line and also web advertising by a flat fee for a certain amount of days the job is listed. If I were to take the short ad we're charged for and print it in the Chronicle it would run me around $180 but for only one day, to post it on Monster would be $365 but I could use as long of a description as I would like and I would get 60 days.”

It was a minimum four line ad. I told him it couldn't get much cheaper here.

“The thing that gets me, I guess, is that you have to have a 4 line minimum, “ he complained. “ Being that you can just attach the full description for free, you still have to find 4 lines to justify your ad.”

I explained that it is the labor involved in designing the ad, the time in going back and forth, keeping track, the billing, and we reach the market place they want to reach. When we had tried a listing with a link to a site, it didn't work. We now get results. We get testimonials. Our concept was to make an attractive ad, a web ad, that would draw a prospective employee to read it. If they found they were interested or would qualify, then to click to a full description or the web site description, and when they found out more, apply and then see if there was a fit. Also some send to a friend who they know is looking or wants to change companies.

In thinking about it, we were pricing the ads on a line basis, the old print newspaper way. I realized we didn't charge for the spacing, and then we could make the ads more attractive, which was our goal, and it would give the designer more freedom to treat it as a display ad rather than just a classified or “line” ad.

As for price, often we will give a smaller company a break, as we want to see smaller companies advertise more. And now we also will give a 15% advertising agency discount, something that everyone else does, and we just never thought of it. So the new approach and look should be credited to Jevon Allen, who we very much appreciate his contribution. We are sending him a bottle of 1996 Sinskey Carneros Merlot.

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