Typically, my day begins by 4am. It’s my “me” time. I grab a cup of coffee, sit down at my home office PC, (remember that) answer some emails, read a little news and hit my gym by 5. Pretty routine. Today like I always do, I was surfing the web for news and finally found something interesting to read. And, as I was reading, I noticed a situation occurring. One I had seen before but never to this degree. It prompted me to write this article.
I was on my thirty-second page scanning this news site and for the entire thirty-two pages, I had four of the same ads, from four different companies stalking me on every single page. They were all from home remodeling or construction materials sites. I’m in the process of building a new home.
What I truly found odd was the number of times consecutively these ads were served. Obviously, they really want my business. Even more obvious, they weren’t going to stop until they got it.
But where was their agency in all this? Was this a classic case of the agency just setting and forgetting it or were they instructed to take the governors off and just let ‘em rip? Maybe these were internal marketing departments, not an agency, showing they have no real knowledge of how to spend their company’s money wisely. I’m not sure but I’m sure someone doesn’t know what they are doing because it clearly didn’t appear that any ad pacing was at play here. After all, four companies, thirty-two consecutive times. I mean you would think common sense might tell you after 5 times or 10 times, if I hadn’t clicked on one of the ads, I clearly wasn’t interested!
They served me kitchen cabinets, fireplace mantels, tile and hardwood flooring. Stuff I’m going to eventually need right? Ok, now here it is. Wait for it, it’s coming, it really is coming, I promise! I already purchased those exact items they were showing me from the exact same sites that were serving me the ads!
Now remember, way back in the second line of this article, I said I was at my home office PC, the same PC that I purchased the items from! So, one must ask, where is their third-party data that everyone says is so good? These companies that promise they know everything about everyone including what time we go to bed and wake up! This third-party tracking data is so good that it can’t even tell I have the same IP address or have purchased these products already from these exact companies. Really?
Now, I know some digital gurus are going to explain this away by saying, that they were hoping to sell me more. Bullsh-t! If that is truly the case then be smart enough to serve me something I haven’t already purchased, maybe a tub, a light, doorknobs, something, but not the items I’ve already purchased.
I’m not going to belabor the point because I think it’s clearly obvious. Whether you are an agency or an internal marketing department, you need to know what you are doing. And, if one of your jobs is placements, then you need to know what is effective and what is wasteful. Furthermore, you need to know how to vet your third-party partners and validate their spiel, not just fall for it.
Do the work, take the time, don’t just mail it in or set it and forget it! You embarrass our profession!