Are Digital Marketers Responsible For Results?

There seems to be a new culture of expectation among advertisers who utilize digital marketing as a medium; and for the record this is the biggest advertising medium there is.  Advertisers who do not get the click, views, whatever the case may be,  are coming back to the marketing company and holding them responsible.  Since when did the marketing company become responsible for sales?  In the past they were not; and even today in traditional marketing they are not held to this standard.  If you were to purchase prime time space on one of the big networks during prime television you would not hold NBC, CBS, or ABC responsible if you did not get the sales that you wanted.  Why would you?  All they did was air your commercial, that’s what their responsibility is.  If you place a quarter or half page ad in People magazine you do not hold People Magazine responsible for the number of sales that you get off of that ad, their job was to deliver a certain amount of magazines with your ad in it, nothing more. So why are digital marketers held to a different standard than traditional marketers?

There is no clear answer here, but the culture of digital advertisers seems to be much different than that of traditional, but it shouldn’t be; the owner of an online marketing company has no more control over the success or failure of your campaign than a traditional marketing company does…  If you do a pay per click campaign for example and you only pay for those that click through; the only responsibility of the marketing company is to get those people that clicked through to your website, they are not responsible for conversion… All they are responsible for is getting those people to your site; it is then your website’s job to convert them into a sale.  So calling them and saying 1000 people clicked through to my site but I didn’t get any sales is not their fault, nor should it be their problem.

John Bolt President  of Bolts Marketing had this to say, “It amazes me how many people in business these days expect a guarantee on sales with their advertising but when asked to supply the name of any company offering such a guarantee, they cannot name one. Why they cannot is very simple, it doesn’t exist and as soon as people embrace this and start treating advertising for what it can do rather than what they want it to do they will be more successful with their advertising efforts.”  He says, “We pitch a lot of auto dealers with our services. Many of them like to say “before I do this I need to know this advertising will result in sales”. My reply to them is that we are not in the business of selling cars; we are in the business of reaching people who are in the market to buy a car to let them know you sell cars. We are quite good at this and if you are good at selling cars I am certain this will result in sales.”

At the end of the day marketers are not responsible for sales, they are responsible for reaching people on your behalf, of driving traffic to your website, in the old days they were responsible for making your phone ring, it’s your job to make a sale, not the marketing company, this is how it’s always and how it should still be..