Never trust an expert
who knows everything
A WEEK EARLIER, my client had called, a little abashed. It was about the landing page and the retargeting ads I’d created for him. It seems the 20-year-old charged with uploading them had just warned him that they wouldn’t work.
“I’m only passing it along,” my client assured me. “You have final say. You’re the expert.”
I have a fair amount of expertise in media that were around when I majored in advertising and throughout most of my career—TV and radio, newspapers and magazines, direct mail, and billboards. I also have a fair amount of expertise when it comes to putting together words that sell stuff.
I did not, however, grow up with online advertising.
The last thing you need is a marketing consultant who knows everything. Good ones know when to shut up and listen to someone who knows more.
I said to my client, “He may know something I don’t,” and had him put me in touch with the 20-year-old uploader dude so that I could hear him out.
Last night I spent 45 minutes on the phone with him. He might know something I don’t was an understatement. I listened, learned, and finished by telling my client that we should take the uploader dude’s suggestions.
One reason for retaining an expert like me is that, well, I’m supposed to be an expert. But no one is an expert in everything. “When I’m on sure ground,” I told my client, “I’ll stick to my guns. But the last thing you need is a marketing consultant who knows everything. Good ones know when to shut up and listen to someone who knows more.”