Beware the Pettiness of Marketing Agencies

The pettiness of marketing agencies

Photo by Kev Seto on Unsplash

One of my staff just spent the weekend rebuilding a new clients’ AdWords campaign that was “mysteriously” deleted without notice or cause.

What happened?

Turns out the agency that handled them prior decided that it was THEIR Adwords campaign and deleted it entirely without warning or notifying the client.


This kind of thing has serious financial repercussions for several reasons:

  1. Lost leads obviously equal lost enrollments.
  2. Relaunching an AdWords campaign means the client has lost their entire history, which influences ad position, quality score, and cost per click. Lead flow will be lower and more expensive, and it will take months to rebuild.
  3. The client lost any important marketing intelligence on which ads work, don’t work, which keywords are the highest performing, etc., resulting in more trial and error and lost research.

Like I said, it’s serious and could cost this school hundreds of thousands of dollars in lost revenue.

Now I can’t name this marketing company, as I don’t want to poke a vindictive beast because I’m drama-avoidant, but it should be a cautionary tale that you make absolutely sure that WHOEVER is managing your campaign is crystal clear that it is YOUR property and not to be meddled with. And if you are going to terminate the relationship, lock them out of the account beforehand.

(Note: I reviewed their contract, and there was no language suggesting ownership, IP claims, or any legal reason they would do this. So, clearly, contract language isn’t a protection.)

I can tell you this kind of ego-based pettiness is pretty common. Marketing agencies regularly claim ownership over things they have no business controlling – hosting, Adwords accounts, software, landing pages, etc. – to try to create an environment of dependency on them. It’s a tactic of low-value, small-minded people who can’t compete on legitimacy or insight. And something we have NEVER done in our history.

We believe that when a client leaves the moral and smart thing to do is make the transition as seamless as possible. That’s always been our policy at Enrollment Resources. And it’s allowed us to preserve great relationships, even when they end.

So buyer beware, as they say.


PS: Wow, two days later we had another school approach us with the identical issue from the same company. Protect yourselves.