Are You Using Dex Media for Some of Your Online Marketing?
If so, you should continue reading this. Let me ask you a few questions.
- How has the customer service been? Have they met or exceeded your expectations? When you call them, do you get straight answers in a timely manner?
- Do you know exactly what kind of marketing they do for you?
- Do you know if they are running PPC campaigns with AdWords or Bing Ads?
- Do they send you timely reports about what they are spending your money on?
- Do you get a monthly report showing you exactly what they have done and how it has improved your organic traffic?
- Have you tried to stop your contract with them only to find that they continue to bill you and give you the “run around” when you call them?
- Have you just been paying them money on a monthly basis for “online marketing services” without receiving verifiable results of their efforts?
If you answered no to most of those questions and yes to that last question, then you are just like a growing number of Dex Media clients (both past and present) who are fed up with their horrible marketing services.
In my experience, most of the people who signed up with Dex Media were sold a “bill of goods” and are not even aware of exactly what Dex does for them. This is by design. Many very reputable people in the online marketing company who specialize in areas like SEO, PPC and Display advertising think that Dex is a complete scam. At the very least, they are just an extremely large company that works in volume (not quality) and they put sales revenue above the care and service of their clients.
By volume I mean they are more of a large scale sales company that provides a low quality service. Put another way, they have become less of a marketing company and more of a glorified sales force that tends to “puke out” horrible marketing services to clients. Their strategy is to promise everything under the sun in their initial sales consultations, then work the upsell angle when you start catching on that they are not producing results. This is really when the cat ‘n mouse game begins with them. You start asking them about work they have done and they begin to be evasive and sometimes tell you that you need to “upgrade to a better package to get those results. You eventually get fed up, try and cancel your service only to run into more issues. Sound familiar?
Their model is basically to increase clientele by any means necessary and lock them into contracts that are very difficult to get out of.
The Pay Per Click (PPC) Scam
Part of Dex’s marketing strategy is to use Pay Per Click on Google, Bing and Yahoo. I have come across several of these PPC campaigns for various businesses and they are horrible. There are various estimates about the markup of this program, but they range from 25% to 50% – that’s a lot!
One of the really “shady” tactics they do with these PPC ads is that they don’t send traffic directly to your website. They actually create a very “cookie cutter” webpage on their own site that is very poorly created.
Have you ever looked for your ad on Google and looked to see where it takes you when you click on it? There are a few problems with this.
These landing pages directly represent you and your business. People who visit a site for the first time will make a quick assessment of you as a business, based solely on the “feel” they get from your site. The fact that poorly crafted landing page Dex created for you will look highly similar to other businesses – including your competitors who use them – will have a negative impact on your business and the ability to generate quality leads from this. The only area on these landing pages that allows people to go to your site is typically a small “visit website” button. The more clicks people have to make to get to the information they need, the less likely they will be to continue on in trying to find it.
Dex Control’s Who Sees the Data
Since Dex drives these PPC ads to their own landing pages, you don’t get to see much of the data from these campaigns. You will be able to see any traffic you may get from this landing page (it will just show traffic coming from the Dex landing page in Google Analytic), but that is it.
With a typical PPC campaign that you run (and have complete control over), you would be able to have access to all of the data from your PPC campaign in both your PPC dashboard and Google Analytics.
All of the small business PPC clients I run campaigns for have the same access to information as I do. They can log into their AdWords accounts at anytime and see exactly what I’m seeing. Heck, they can make changes if they want to. Also, if for some reason they want to part ways with me, they can easily remove my access to the account. This is how it works with most honest and client-focused marketing companies who do PPC. This is not what Dex does. Kind of makes you wonder why they are so keen on hiding this type of information from their clients.
Even More Dex Secrecy
One of the really deceitful tactics Dex employs is the fact that they don’t tell you how much is being spent on PPC advertising and how much is going in their “pockets”. This is not reported by them and it is in direct conflict with Google’s own policies for AdWords advertisers. Here’s the policy
First, did you know if Dex is running a PPC campaign for you? Second, do you have any idea how much is actually being spent to run this actual campaign?
Any reputable company that does AdWords for clients shows them exactly how much is being spend on the campaign (the dollars that go to run the ads) and how much goes to management fees. This is how I do business with my clients. Complete transparency.
The fact that Dex does not do this should raise more red flags for you.
Are you at a point where you are fed up with Dex?
If you are and you are still in a contract with them, you may have some options. Here’s a few tips on how you can try and save the rest of your money and cut ties with Dex.
- First, find your contract and read it. Get familiar with what it says and what Dex’s obligation are.
- Give them a call and see if you can be let out of your contract. Tell them you do not feel like you are getting what was promised to you. Escalate the phone call up to the chain and try to talk to as many people as you can.
- If this doesn’t work, then point out Google’s requirement for AdWords resellers to show the actual AdWords cost to clients (the amount that is actually paid to Google).
- Another option for those who continue to get money deducted from the credit cards is to have the bank remove the authorization for Dex Media. This could potentially lead to collection issues down the road so keep in mind that this is done at your own risk.
- Another thing you can do is go to various websites like this one and leave a complaint. There are many highly dissatisfied Dex customers who have left complaints here that may be getting some type of resolutions. You see, when you publicly display your displeasure with companies on the Internet for everyone to see, these businesses tend to find some extra motivation to get the issue resolved. Go figure.
Read Some Dex Media Reviews and Complaints
Sooo, do you see a pattern?
If you are having a bad experience with Dex Media, then I encourage you to stop doing business with them. If you are thinking about doing business with them, then stop!
There are much better alternatives. Yes, we do marketing for local businesses and would be happy to speak with you about helping your business grow through online marketing.
- We don’t do contracts of any kind. You can cancel at anytime for any reason.
- You’ll have control over your own accounts….as it should be. You simply give us permission to access them and you can remove it at anytime.
- You would have complete transparency and have ability to see the exact same data as we do.
- We offer a free Adwords audit of your existing account
With that said, there are plenty of other really good companies out there that actually care about getting you results and not about getting as much money from you as possible.