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5 Sins of Digital Marketing

Do you know what my bonus was from the very beginning in marketing? I was on the client’s side! And I’ve had questions ever since.

They’ve piled up on freelancers, giant agencies, and average conveyor-belt marketers. Questions are good.

  • Blinding with Dust
  • Gigantic Trash Bins
  • Deadlines
  • Results
  • Accountability

GIGANTIC trash bins

Yes, the title fits. Overwhelm you with 150-page audits? Easy! Quickly, automatically, and utterly useless.

Yes, there is a point in preliminary audits or budget calculations for advertising. It’s about how it’s done.

Most of the time, it’s something soulless, without anyone’s hands-on involvement, someone who would look closely at the project and say, “Yes, we know 5 things that need to be done in the first month, not 150 pages that no one will ever look at.” I never read beyond the second page of those 3 packs of 70 pages from 3 major Moscow agencies. And I wouldn’t recommend it to you either. G.A.R.B.A.G.E. But some business owners get scared by such audits! (That’s why they do them.)

Blinding with Dust

700 employees, gigantic clients, million-dollar cases, offices in trendy skyscrapers, and fancy salespeople. None of this may have any impact on you in actual work. If you’re not a “million-dollar” priority client, they’ll assign an intern or a newbie freelancer (hello, Yo-Lama! and 200$ spent in a week on Talking Tom).

Why? Because you’re small and insignificant, that’s all. They have billions, and who are you?

Expensive doesn’t mean competent. (But you know, it’s the same in your niche.)


Hello to all the websites that were supposed to be done in 1 month and are still being worked on. I know at least a dozen examples personally, one has been dragging on for over 3 years.

Why? Lack of system, discipline, understanding of project management. Typical for all contractors, from solo freelancers to giants. Giants just often have some form of “deviation control” capabilities. When the cock has already crowed, the director comes and hands out “gifts.”

Missing deadlines is such a “norm.” Many work this way in various niches. This is NOT normal. The norm is keeping your word and providing real forecasts.

By the way, every other case, I’m sure, includes the client’s lack of interest. Creating a website without the client’s involvement is like preparing the most boring and tasteless dish in the world. That’s why millions of websites are created and abandoned every year. Most won’t even make a single dollar.


KPIs or key performance indicators, like leads, revenue, clicks, whatever (in general, you can always translate everything into money if you want), are needed for both businesses and those promoting them.

It’s common that marketers don’t guarantee anything and are not accountable, while businesses “save” on cheap contractors. It’s a broken system.

KPI is a rare bird and usually very expensive. Because one side always wants someone to be responsible for the entire result for free, while the other wants more and avoids responsibility for failures (which are always there, objectively).

Determine some target numbers, always. Even if it’s not profit, turnover, or leads. There are a dozen other possibilities, I assure you.

When there’s a criterion for my success in work, I understand what’s in my responsibility, what I can influence, and how to win this competition. And the business knows how to evaluate results. Then there are no questions, and when there are no questions, you can work on results for years.

The essence of business is not to save but to earn money. Go to those who can give you an additional 2$ for every 1$. Better yet, 3 (5-10-100).


Oh, limited resources not only lead to saving money and choosing the wrong contractors but also saving time. Completely. You save time by not delving into your own marketing, and the executors also save their time on you.

Who’s to blame? The main question, who’s to blame in a big team? Who in a small one? And if it’s a freelancer, then what?

Maybe your contractors have done 100% of what’s possible. But it’s time to reform your project. Or give people more freedom, opportunities, and responsibility, seek those who aren’t afraid of it. Most often, in large teams, it’s not clear if anyone is overseeing your project.

Usually, this also involves work on refusals/conflicts/objections. So you say, “We haven’t had any leads for 3 months,” and they’re like, “Oh, really? We’ll check right away.”

Or you ask to subtract half of the semantics they’ve collected, and they find this information only a year later, after a nudge. And for a year, the wrong advertising is running. Because everyone has forgotten, both you and them (hello to a certain large and well-known agency my client worked with at the same time until this came to light).

I realized that one of the criteria for working well is when we are the ones constantly asking the business for something—based on results, meaning, the absence of leads, and sales.

The Most Important Things and Conclusion

What’s most important in internet marketing contractors? That they care. Out of enthusiasm, for money (percentages, bonuses, anything), to create a great case, maybe because they believe in your project and in you personally. Anyway, enthusiasm.

And that you care too. It’s your project, your business, and your money. There are no boys and girls who suddenly find your life more interesting than you do. Period.

Just handing everything over to someone and throwing up your hands, you’d better bet on zero.

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