Monday, April 14, 2008

Online ad fails - not enough bandwidth!?!

I may write a book about the relationship between Marketing and IT. It is so critical, yet so often adversarial or even non-existent.

Marketing is the engine that drives business. Since the role of marketing is to identify possible sources of revenue then create programs to generate demand from those sources, what could be more important for a business? The other business functions need to be aligned with the organization's business and marketing strategy. What good is lead generation if the sales department isn't staffed to follow up on leads. What good is online advertising if a click-through results in an error message!! If you can believe it, that happens!!

I responded to an online ad recently. It was really effective because a) it was targeted appropriately, and b) it was enticing enough for me to respond. Marketing utopia! But when I clicked on the ad...

Can you believe it?

The online ad was so effective, the response caused bandwidth issues for the company! So everyone that clicked-through was UNABLE to acquire the company's product! Presumably, we all just clicked the BACK button and went about our day. All of us potential customers. All of us lost.

We (marketers) work so hard to find the web sites with audience demographics that fit our product / ideal customer. And we work so hard to create ads that motivate that audience to respond. Then when they finally do respond, an error message?!?

Now, I'm not blaming IT overtly. It's just as important for Marketing to talk to IT and say "We're expecting X% click-through, which could mean as many as Y purchases in a 48 hour period. Can our system support that?" as it is for IT to anticipate the demands on the system based on the overall corporate marketing strategy.

The point is: Marketing and IT need to be aligned so this doesn't happen.

How to facilitate and solidify this alignment is a topic for a book, not a blog post.

I just might talk to a publisher or two...

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