Saturday, 6 October 2012

Five Ways To Spot A Bad Online Marketing Consultant

More and more people today are turning to the Internet to buy products, find local services or get information. Sadly, the number of people looking to exploit this fact has also grown. With this in mind, beware that if you are looking for an internet marketing consultant there will be a lot of dishonest people amongst the genuine professionals. The bad consultants will have very little real knowledge of the world of online marketing and will very likely charge you a lot of money but give you few results in return.

To help ensure you find the best service, here are five tips for avoiding the bad consultants:

Vague About Services: If a consultant uses vague terms to describe what they can do for you, be very wary indeed. Using ‘technical’-sounding language to talk about their services without actually telling the potential client in clear terms what they can do for them is a classic tactic of the charlatan. Another way to spot a chancer is that they will be reluctant to set concrete goals so it is hard to quantify what they have actually achieved for you. It’s a good idea, before you talk to them, to read up a little about internet marketing first so you can be ready for them if they try to blind you with impressive-sounded terms.
Wild Promises: If an internet marketing consultant tells you they can guarantee you number one search engine rankings, never hire them. It is extremely difficult, particularly in highly competitive markets, to achieve this position and it is never certain that you will be able to do so. True, it is easier in some niches where there is very little competition, but even in these cases it would be foolish and unprofessional of a consultant to make any such promises.
Cagey About Their Past: Be on your guard if the consulting company you are talking to is reluctant to give you any information about past clients. A good firm should be happy to provide you with references and also to show you examples of their previous work and where it has succeeded. If they can’t offer you this, how do you know if they have ever had any successes at all?
They Are Always Right: A good consultant will be keen to sit down and listen to what you want to achieve from using their services. Rather than tell you what you need without first finding out what your company does, they will want to adapt a marketing strategy to suit you. If they are reluctant to discuss any concerns you have, or make changes if you want them to, they are not providing you with the service you deserve.
They Won’t Talk Prices: This is so important: always, always agree on a fixed price for services before you sign any contracts. If, during early talks, a consultant keeps avoiding the issue of what their services will actually cost, run a mile! You can be pretty sure they are trying to avoid the issue and get you hooked so they can charge you over the odds and add plenty of hidden clauses to the contract so you end up paying far more than you should be.

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