Dear person recruiting for the LOVEFiLM Social Product Manager vacancy,


Do you know what the highlight of my week is? Of course you don’t – you’re not a mind-reader! (If you are a mind-reader – and this is no disrespect to your current employers – you should probably be using your powers for something other than digital marketing).

So let me tell you.

It’s the point on Saturday morning when I turn on my Sony BRAVIA TV’s internet thingy, navigate to the LOVEFiLM wotsit and see what new movies have been added that week. I’m not even kidding – I eagerly look forward to that moment every single week.

It’s fun, you see. Watching films is fun, and so is the anticipation of seeing what the new additions to the ‘Recently Added’ category are. Being able to watch the film there and then at no extra cost is fun. Showing people the LOVEFiLM streaming thingy is fun, because they’re always impressed by it. Browsing through the hundreds (thousands?) of films is fun. Reading the reviews other users write about the films on the website is fun. Being notified that a new Blu-ray is disc is being mailed out to me is fun.

What I’m trying to say here, in case you hadn’t guessed, is that LOVEFiLM is a fun thing, and I imagine your future endeavours in social media will attempt to extend this fun to whatever you do in that area.

Which is why I was disappointed to find that the ad for the LOVEFiLM Social Product Manager vacancy – which I would expect to be at the very least an interesting position, and potentially even fun – contrives to make the job sound about as exciting as being a Data Analysis Intern.

I’m (kind of) sorry to sound so overweeningly obnoxious here. I know you have to weed out the social media douchebags and chancers. And, especially after the recent Amazon deal (congratulations!), I’m sure everything you do has to be measurable as hell. But come on!

  • “Understanding the environment – mastery”: What does this even mean? What environment? LOVEFiLM’s environment? Because this reads like there’s a little-suspected eco element to the role. How do people know if they will understand your environment if you give no information about it? You might eat cats every Thursday as a team-building exercise for all I know, which is something I personally would find difficult to understand.
  • “Help defining social strategy and roadmap (in conjunction with the Head of Product). Including the future integration of social elements on LOVEFiLM sites and services.”: Where’s the zing? Hmm? You’re talking about engaging with a large, passionate and knowledgeable base of users here. Are you enthusiastic about doing that? Are you? Because if you’re not, why should potential applicants be? (Should be “define”, not “defining”, by the way.)
  • “Embracing change – mastery”: “hELLo. i aM LoVeFiLm BoT. I aM MaStErFUL at eMbRACiNG cHanGE.” This could only be more vague if you’d written it in invisible ink.
  • “The role is based in West London and we are offering a competitive salary”: Are there any perks, film-related or otherwise? Surely there must be? If so, you might want to mention them here.

Your brand is one I’ve followed for a while, and I am very fond of it. I’ve met people who work for you, and they’ve always seemed bright, creative and very aware of the value of the LOVEFiLM brand.

Perhaps this job ad was issued by a visiting Amazonian in your midst or something. Wherever it came from, it’s bloody horrible and damaging to the brand you’ve spent a number of years refining. I heard someone say that this ad made them not want to apply for the job.

Hopefully there are people internally who feel the same way, but perhaps they don’t feel able to point it out. Whatever the deal is, feel free to show this email to someone who has the heft to ensure your job ads (or at least the ones that are attempting to attract creative/community/social folk) stop reading like they were spewed out by a robot plugged into a KPI matrix.

This blip aside – I hope you continue to grow and provide fun for film nerds everywhere (I’m rooting for you in the forthcoming battle with Netflix).

Stuart Waterman