It's a Friday afternoon and Jane Flotte is getting a little tired of spa treatments. "Today I've written a lot of salon deals," the Groupon employee said. "And I'm getting kind of sick of talking about facials."
If today is bad, though, yesterday was even worse. "I had to write a cupcake deal, and it was really late [in the day] and I was so hungry," she laughed. "It was terrible." But Flotte isn't actually complaining. She, like the rest of Groupon's army of twenty-something writers, is eager to churn out prose and study the craft.
She may be in the best possible place to do it. With a team of experienced editors, a new program called Groupon Academy, and a vigorous -- but rewarding -- recruiting process, the Web-based coupon company is investing significant time into teaching and training its writers.
And it's paying off. Business Insider recently listed Groupon as one of this year's most innovative alternative storytellers alongside USA Today, the Los Angeles Times, the New York Times, and other traditional news outlets. "Groupon isn't a news website," they explained. "But as Thrillest CEO Ben Lerer said, 'The most well-read publication now might be Groupon.'"
Forty percent of Groupon's writers have prior journalism experience, 70 percent were creative writers and 20 percent wrote marketing or business copy. As of this writing, there are 59 writers, 16 editors, 15 image designers, 24 fact-checkers, 11 copy editors and four editorial recruiters. They've hired 40 writers in the last six months.