Recently I have been working with an IT VAR (Value Added Reseller) to get all their sales and marketing processes in shape. The business owner was frustrated that despite spending a lot of money on marketing they were not seeing any return on investment.

He had outsourced the website management including SEO and Google Adwords to a marketing company so we started focusing on other forms of lead generation and the lead conversion processes. We have now got all of those working well and our attention has switched onto SEO and Google Adwords and it is not looking pretty!

It has become clear that the supplier does not really understand lead generation. All the focus is on driving traffic to the site rather than how to generate a lead. Its like having a football team that is focusing on kicking the ball rather than getting the ball in the back of the net!

Despite having the word ‘marketing’ in the company name they did not seem to understand the meaning of the word – even after many conversations about what we wanted to achieve. You can use all the clever words and pictures you like but if you cannot deliver what you promise then that is, in my opinion, bad marketing. Not only does the relationship potentially ‘end in tears’ but you also miss out on additional business, referrals, testimonials etc etc I suspect this particular company is more of a technology company that understands how to drive traffic and not how to convert the traffic.

I cannot emphasise enough the importance of doing the business groundwork and that understanding your market is essential for long term sales success. It does not need to be a long or an expensive exercise but it can help save a lot of wasted money on ineffective marketing. My client had been wasting money due to lack of their own groundwork but that is now taken care of!

As for this ‘internet marketing’ company, they now need to go and find another naive customer to let down or better still, do their own groundwork and understand their own market. Cobblers shoes and all that!