…Singin’ a Song…Dont Mess Around ‘Cause You Just Might Go Broke….

Several clients and colleagues of mine have started a disturbing trend of bouncing around to various digital marketing companies for help with their websites, social media, and search engine optimization.

Aside from poor service and obvious lack of performance, there is only one reason to do this ever, and that is if your current digital marketing partner is not a complete one-stop shop. For example, if you have a solid website manager, but you want social media help, and they don’t offer it, then you should ask them for a referral. Chances are, it’s someone who understands your web manager’s culture, and is aligned with their ethic. Being that you’ve kept the web manager on, you must be happy with them as well.

A growing trend has been for clients of mine to get somehow seduced by another company who develops websites, and promises to dramatically increase results. In the past 3 years about 10 clients have been taken from my company, and 8 of them have come back.¬†And the number of times the other web company has produced better results? Zero. Yes zero, I follow-up. I’ve even taken such measures as to have an “Infinity Backup”. This is a secure storage location in the cloud where I backup all websites, 3 times per year, and keep them forever. I’ve needed to retrieve from it a number of times. One client left 5 years ago, and came back.

It can be a huge setback to bounce around to various digital marketing agencies. Chances are you’re simply encountering better sales pitches, and in 80% of the real world cases will be left disappointed. There’s one particular company I won’t name, but they’ve “stolen” 3 of my clients, all of whom have come back. The interesting thing is, when the client comes back, I hear all about what the other company suckered them into and how much more expensive it is.

So what happens is this typical scenario:

You’ve paid your current web provider $3,200 for a site

You hire a new one and pay them $4,700

It doesn’t work out and you go back to your previous, and the costs are $200 to get reinstated.

You’ve overspent by almost $5,000, not including the time you spent getting acclimated to the new digital marketing people. (The real world examples that my company has been involved with were not so nice. My client spent tens of thousands with the competing company and got a fraction of the result. True story.)

Here are some red flags to watch out for, when a digital marketing company is trying to sway you away

1. They openly bash the company with whom you’re currently engaged in. I never ever do this. It’s just bad etiquette, and if they have no problem stepping on fellow business people, they’ll have no problem stepping on you when a better opportunity comes around. Their attention is finite and you’ll be paying a huge monthly fee and getting no service. (This has happened several times)

2. They “specialize” in exactly what you do. You’re a Restaurant owner, and you’ve been approached by a company that only does digital marketing for Restaurants. Score! They must know what they’re doing! No. First of all, there is a 90% chance, they have setup 27 LLCs for phantom digital marketing companies who specialize in exactly whatever their target does. It’s pure deception. Also, there’s a good chance that you will not own the content on your own website. This has happened to a Tree Company and a Veterinarian’s Office that went to an industry specific digital marketing agency. And if the industry specialized company even is legit, here are 5 more reasons.

3. Their cost is a fraction of what you’ve been paying. You get what you pay for, but this can be exponentially worse. If they change your website, and it’s a cheaper looking version of your previous one, your reputation could be damaged, and this could spiral into losing search engine placement. Now, not only have you lost ground, but you’re losing business.

The only reason to leave who you’re working with is if you abjectly get ripped off, or your service response is not to your satisfaction. If this is the case, discuss it with your digital marketing partner. Don’t “Agency-hop”. It’ll cost you way more in the long run. If one of us knew that much more than the rest, there’d only be one of us.