There are sharks in these digital waters.  And a rant too.

Got a call from an old client the other day.  He has 3 new businesses he was doing consulting work with.  He wants an audit to check and see how everything is going for two of those businesses.  They’re spending around $5K a month and it’ll be a good exercise for those accounts.  (if you’re interested, here’s the page – and yes we often do audits for other agencies)

It’s his third business and the situation it’s in that brings up my blood pressure.  This business, as told to them by their digital agency, was spending $20K a month.  Except it wasn’t, the spend was more like $40K.

There are multiple companies in this business and if the results warrant, increasing spend is often a way to increase profit.  And in this case $40K a month wouldn’t be a crippling amount.

The part that makes me furious is the way the agency has gone about that increase in spend.  They operate based on 15% of spend (read all about my preferred model here) but they have sent invoices to multiple companies within the business to disguise the real cost of their management fee, which is around $6K a month.

But gouging doesn’t stop here with this particular digital agency.

They’re charging 7.5¢ a click!  Brand terms alone might end up doubling the cost!

They asked this agency about implementing call tracking.  A feature you can turn on with a few keystrokes in less than 3 minutes – if it was your first time.  The agency was going to charge $5,000 for this “service“.

Absolutely criminal.  It’s cowboy agencies like this that are ripping off businesses (big & small) that really piss me off.

When you set about hiring an agency – make sure you keep control of you account.  And read the agency essentials!