Aside

Are we that difficult?

This is a rhetoric question.

In the month of December, it was decided by us that the rate at which we are able to generate leads by SEM are not enough and we need to outsource this function. Obviously, my SEM team was a bit disheartened, however the demands of the business have to be met and I consider it that if someone can do a better job than me, then its better to learn from that instead of sit behind and sulk.

Come January, we initiated talks with different firms and decided on one very well known firm who is known to have automated campaign management and ergo large scale capabilities (this is the one point in our campaign management where we were facing problems). The entire month of January was sadly wasted in the sales person of the agency we contacted being in travel and not closing this deal. Finally, in the month of February we agreed upon a contract and we signed on the dotted line.

The eagerness to help our marketing campaign then suddenly seemed to vanish! Post that day, I haven’t even heard from the sales chap who followed up with us (or rather whom we followed up with!!). We were introduced to a technical wiz who would take care of all our campaigns. We waited for more than 20 days for him to completely take over our campaigns … but the only change done till that point of time was simply changing the landing page URLs so that they can track the campaign performances (our campaigns that my team had done) through their system.

When you are in the middle of a peak season, you want business and not inaction. We demanded faster turn around times and a strict schedule. We would follow-up with their team and get them to deliver on time. Over a period of time we realized that most of the work is still being done by us. At this point I could not stand it any longer … this firm apparently is the market leader … they have a team as large as us working solely on Adwords … I have 2 people (that’s including myself!).

Inspite of this, if this organization cannot deliver a better performance in campaigns … then it makes sense to tell them to take a hike … or even better, me to start a new organization!

What followed was a heartfelt email (though a bit harsh) to the co-founders of the organization (who were by this time involved in this account). One of the co-founders emailed back saying that we are being too demanding on this team and its dragging their team morale down.

At this point, it struck me … are we that difficult to work with? Or is the industry not able to deliver and working on castles in the air?