Hub spot halloween_special-_marketing_agency_horror_stories

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About the Author Andrea is a marketing funnel optimisation specialist at HubSpot, Dublin. She is a member of the international marketing team, where she manages email marketing and lead nurture workflows, as well as list segmentation and improved targeting. Her data-driven testing informs the teams strategic decisions and contributes to improving the number of leads generated and the quality of those leads. @andydidwhat

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  • 1. HUBSPOT HALLOWEEN SPECIAL
  • 2. About the Author Andrea is a marketing funnel optimisation specialist at HubSpot, Dublin. She is a member of the international marketing team, where she manages email marketing and lead nurture workflows, as well as list segmentation and improved targeting. Her data-driven testing informs the teams strategic decisions and contributes to improving the number of leads generated and the quality of those leads. @andydidwhat
  • 3. Table of Terrifying Content Chapter 1: Dangerous Liaisons: Choosing the wrong clients 4 Stories from Bryan Adams (PH Creative) and Patrick Armitage (BlogMutt) Chapter 2: Creepy Scope: When projects go beyond the original timetable 7 Stories from Ed Marsh (Consilium Global Business) and Emma Jones (Katapult) Chapter 3: Watch Your Back! The importance of having a backup plan 10 Stories from Sarah McIntyre (Bright Inbound Marketing), Alistair Norman (Tomorrow People) and Pau Valds (InboundCycle) Chapter 4: Falling Behind... Keeping up with industry changes 14 Stories from Matt Hodkinson (Influence Agents) and James Welch (Online Ventures Group) Chapter 5: Strategy Tragedy: When strategies fall apart 17 Stories from David Bowler (Incisive Edge) and Ricardo Molina (Brightbull) Chapter 6: Client Catastrophes: When clients get in the way 20 Stories from Bernie Borges (Find and Convert), James Cox (Tracepoint) and Chuck Malcomson (Screwpile) *BONUS* Email Wails! - classic email fail contributions Kelly Kranz (OverGo Studio) 7 Roberto Moragn (INCRENTA) 12 Guy Levine (Return on Digital) 18 Jeremy Knight (Equinet Media) 23 Laura Hogan (OverGo Studio) 28 ...and a special submission from Klaas Klunders (Marketing Penguin) 34
  • 4. 1 DANGEROUS LIAISONS
  • 5. 5 A BOTTOMLESS PIT OF DISSATISFACTION It pains me to remember this client -- on the outside they appeared to be a great match, but in reality, it was an evil pairing. So we began to work together, and despite the amazing results we were achieving for them, it was never enough. Time after time we would display exemplary results and it was never satisfactory. Regardless of what results we got for them on a monthly basis, they wanted more. They wanted to know why it wasnt better, how we could improve the next month and how we could compensate them for any lost opportunities. It was insanity. They had no grasp of reality. Our team were close to killing themselves during the work and it took months for us to recover our morale even after I had stepped in and delicately moved them on to another agency Today at PH Creative, we have a firm rule which arose from too many similar experiences like this with nightmare clients. In order to work with us, a client must provide two out of three of the following criteria: fame, fortune or fun. Its just not negotiable. Avoid this Nightmare Always ensure the scope of work and the boundaries of the deliverables are set in stone along with setting client expectations firmly in reality Under promise, over deliver and dont be afraid to fire clients if they become too demanding and will not up their budget to compensate for the loss of sanity. Bryan Adams PH CREATIVE @PHCREATIVE Under promise, over deliver and dont be afraid to fire clients if they become too demanding and will not up their budget to compensate for the loss of sanity. TRICK OR TWEET
  • 6. In a previous life, I worked at an agency commissioned to develop 6 an e-commerce website for a client. Awesome, except for one terrifying problem: I never developed, nor did our agency ever develop, an e-commerce site before! We were experiencing the agency equivalent of the bus jump scene in Speed. I was Sandra Bullock, blowing by warning signs, gas pedal floored, white-knuckling it, trying to jump our collective knowledge gap in e-commerce while the rest of the agency braced for impact. That knowledge gap was the need to sync tax tables, shipping and handling fees, bundled pricing, fulfillment, backend CRM integration, accessorising and check-out capabilities in one seamless customer experience. Over the course of the project, we went through three programmers, our client quit, and we went tens of thousands of dollars over budget doing whatever it took to deliver a functioning website held together by spit and duct tape. And just like in Speed, we successfully jumped the gap but not without extensive damage wrought on office morale, our bottom line, and the relationship with the client. Avoid this Nightmare This mistake couldve been avoided if we stayed true to our expertise and played to our strengths. Our agency did great branding, messaging and design work. Our web development capabilities were serviceable but not nearly at the level our client required. Everyone knew it. But we got greedy and fooled ourselves. Going dramatically over budget wasnt the only pain we felt. Nerves were frayed. Other client work suffered, and our teams collective confidence took a hit. Patrick Armitage BLOGMUTT @PAT_ARMITAGE JUMPING FROM A SPEEDING BUS Agencies that say theyre a jack of all trades are a master of none. Sometimes saying no is more profitable than saying yes. TRICK OR TWEET
  • 7. 7 With great intentions of making life easier for one of our clients, we set up a lead nurture email workflow for their new web leads. However, we did this without asking if that was how their sales process worked a hazardous mistake. We simply assumed this was something that theyd want. As you can probably guess, this was absolutely not what the client wanted and they almost fired us immediately a gruesome end. As it turned out, the clients process was to follow up personally with each lead and between getting our nurture emails and the clients personal emails, these leads were getting very confused, sending the client into a fit of rage with us and we were terrified we were going to lose their business. Thankfully, we were able to talk them around by begging for mercy! Avoid this Nightmare Simple; Smarketing. If we knew that our clients sales process was to follow up with leads personally and right away then we could have planned his lead nurturing campaigns better. Now we always connect with the clients sales team first to understand their process. And we get their approval on any emails that go out with their signature on it. Lesson learned! Kelly Kranz OVERGO STUDIO @KELLYKRANZ THE MYSTERY OF THE MULTIPLYING EMAILS If we knew that our clients sales process was to follow up with leads personally and right away then we could have planned his lead nurturing campaigns better. EMAIL WAIL TRICK OR TWEET
  • 8. 2 CREEPY SCOPE
  • 9. 9 Its easy to get caught up in the excitement of inbound and its possibilities for clients but this can be a dangerous thing. With new clients, we have often been eager to set their pulse racing and have set ambitious goals to drive a step change in marketing performance and ROI. With all good intentions, we have pulled out all the stops and put in lots of extra time in order to meet those original goals. Of course, the problem with such over-servicing is that unless the client is aware of all the extra work, it is taken for granted which undervalues our efforts and our inbound proposition as a whole. Avoid this nightmare On reflection, during the early stages of offering inbound services we could have perhaps been more prudent in our goal setting and managing client expectations. Further, its vital to ensure that clients have a clear view of all the work youre putting in so that they understand the full value of your expertise; this builds a platform for a strong relationship moving forward. Emma Jones Katapult @_katapult OVER-SERVICE AT YOUR PERIL Its vital to set clear goals and manage client expectations from the outset to ensure that they understand the full value of your expertise, and have a clear view of the work involved. TRICK OR TWEET -
  • 10. 10 When we at Consilium Global Business first started working with this ghoulish client, we did not realise what a mistake it would be not to set up agreements on what we would deliver and what the client would deliver. We began the project, naively thinking that the client would step in when required to move the project forward. Unfortunately, as time went on, it became clear that the devilish client was not prioritising the relationship, or the job we were trying to do. Tasks that only they could complete were not getting done and the project