Corporate Marketing Chaos


Marketing As You Know It In Your Corporation IS DEAD

Is your marketing team killing - LITERALLY - your business?

Over the past couple of decades, I have seen more businesses destroyed by inadequate, ill-informed, ego seeking marketing executives than you could ever believe.

I watched money wasted, campaigns thrown away, experts being fired for being expert and even more corporate marketing chaos than I could ever spend a day writing about here.

(A quick way to test that is to look at the results from your marketing experts)

This is a true story that leads to an eventual corporate destruction of one company.

It could have been prevented.

It’s all too common.

Names have been changed to protect the fools!

This is me and a corporate client (marketing executive) in conversation after spending months putting together a strategy for the company.

'So here is everything you need to make things this planned strategy happen but the first thing I need you to do is this.'

I wanted him to send the first email I had created to their vast email list.

'OK, I will pass over to be actioned.'


'Yes actioned by John on the 3rd floor.'

'OK so once John actions it will it be done?'

'No he has to send over the details to Kate on the 3rd floor also to be actioned and then her team will start the process of actioning.'

'So will they all be able to action the sending of the email quickly?'

'I have no idea all I do is send over the list to be actioned.'

This was the marketing director of company marketing I was speaking with.

'Ok, how long will it take?'

'It should be actioned by tomorrow.'

Tomorrow comes and tomorrow goes.

The next week comes and the next week goes.

Corporate Marketing Team State of Chaos

In fact 7-weeks later I get no email back to let me know if any action has been actioned by anyone so I again send over an email to the group of action takers which is actually a group of nine people in total. At least five of them are in the same room all day but they all email each other actions and rarely speak to each other. Once when I met them three of them had a conversation whilst all being in the same room over an advert to be run. And no one in this corporate marketing team chaos of nine replies to my emails.

I again send over more emails followed up by 4 phone calls to the phone numbers I have access to. No one picks up, no one replies and time is ticking fast for a strategic campaign that was labelled as very urgent!

Finally, I manage to get hold of the big boss. He asks me how it is all the marketing campaign going?  I say apparently everything is being actioned but no one has got back to me in 7 weeks. He asked what is it I need to be actioned or done? I told him I need them to copy and paste this first letter (a series of 10 emails) and send over to their in-house email list. He tells me he will kick some ass and get it done.


8 weeks later I receive a phone call from the very first person in the line who promised to action everything. He then tells me how bad his team are and how he thought it was being actioned but clearly never done by anyone he is now blaming.

He then asks me if I can log into their data and send the letter to the list? I tell him I cannot because their company won’t allow me to log in as it is a rule that cannot be broken.

This is a problem now and takes yet another week to get ‘actioned’.

Finally, I get a call from a new kid on the company that I haven’t heard of. He's been there two days! He asks for a copy of the letter to be copied and asks for directions. I tell him what he needs to do. He does exactly as I ask and send the email. Back at the call centre, the phones light up with a success rate from an email like they have never seen before.

That simple action of copy & pasting one email took almost 10 weeks to ... ACTION!... This is Corporate Marketing Chaos In It's Most Glorious Moment

In total, it took nine weeks and two days to copy, paste and then send this now damned email. That email pulled in tens of thousands of pounds in sales in the first week of running it. I was desperate to run it, to send it. It was different, it was direct response driven and it was written and created with the mind triggers of the buyer well thought through so as to increase response rates. it worked but it still took ten weeks for the company to send it. Again this whole shambolic corporate marketing story is true.

The Problem and The Lesson For You

Corporate layers built on corporate structures that no longer work in today's world. The speed of everything has changed and changed fast. Delivery and expectations are higher and faster than ever before.

Can you imagine how many sales were lost during that period of nine weeks and three days of everyone telling everyone else to action one marketing act? days?

I worked out this based on what I had seen so far and remembered - I am simply hired here as a strategic marketing consultant so I cannot force anyone to do anything here.

  • To employ the in-house team the wages alone per annum is £259,000
  • To house them in office space and fill that space with equipment lets guess at £100,000
  • At least 4 of them had company cars at a cost of £28,800
  • All have companies phones and leased equipment
  • There are bonuses and shares for these staff also

At a guess but a close guess, the cost of the staffing comes to around £500,000 plus per annum.

That isn’t the biggest problem though it is this.

Staff in corporations love two things.

  1.  They love to be higher than the people below them and want to be as high or higher than the people in front of them. This is more important than results.
  2.  They want to be able to always tell someone else to do what they have been told to do because this removes all responsibility from them when it isn’t done or done badly.
  3.  They hate to measure what counts - response, conversions and sales but love to measure facts that make no difference to the bottom line.


Most marketing that takes place by in-house teams or corporate marketers is done by marketers that are mostly out of touch (not all but mostly). Even worse in my experience marketers are getting lazier and lazier with their lack of ideas. The marketing done by these teams is marketing that was designed as a system for training new marketing people fifty years ago. Believe me, the world has changed since then dramatically as you know.

For example, teams now employ people to simply copy and paste into a Facebook page. The Facebook page almost provides no sales that can be measured yet these marketers do it because its easy and because everyone else is doing it. The problem is most Facebook pages simply don’t work as a sales tool especially in the corporate world. LinedIn the same, Twitter the very same. Yes, they get your name out there and into the community but rarely account for direct sales. Yet they still do the same old thing as always.

You are up against a gang of marketing teenagers

The other problem, of course, is if it takes over 9 weeks to send a single email, corporates are up against new corporations run by teenagers in some cases that are getting what needs to be done in a day or less. I did say a day or less. These kids are smart. They know how to find a need and fill the problem with the perfect solution. I personally would hire a group of smart kids than anyone from corporate marketing that's for sure if -  I had to get the job done fast!

Do you have the layered system that takes weeks or months to do a simple thing? Do you have a corporate marketing team that just doesn't deliver? Does your corporate team take days weeks or even months to get a job done for you?

To survive this brave newer world you have to make changes or you will go extinct

Unless corporations wake up to the reality of a newer, faster direct marketing in today's new world they are screwed and eventually at some point will vanish without a trace only to be replaced by a new kid.

Unless corporations get creative, hire brilliant minds and get things done fast without endless needless layers… some will find it as good as impossible to build a global brand doing things the old way.

You can hire a marketing executive for £50-75k that does the same old thing and brings you nothing or you can hire a young gun with a fresh 21st-century perspective

If you are struggling from corporate marketing chaos and need solid advice on where to go next… contact me here.

I promise I can turn your marketing upside down, inside out and rebuild everything so you get results fast!

Less talk less actioning and more results.

Alan Forrest Smith