Posted January 15, 2008 11:36 am by with 9 comments

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I am sometimes a little negative about CPC advertising because I usually find it overpriced. On the other hand, Vitabase does participate on a limited set of keywords that work for us.

Recently, due to slow sales, we discontinued a certain product. Unfortunately, we missed deleting the associated Yahoo CPC campaign because so little money was being spent on it. Then the product got some very prominant press coverage that revived it dramatically. As a result, we had a huge spike in expensive traffic to a page that no longer existed.

Because of the amount of money involved, I personally called Yahoo! Search Marketing and explained the situation. I told them that we knew it was our fault, but asked if they would work with us. At first, they offered only a token credit, but then agreed to research it further.

I honestly expected to eventually hear back from them that we would be responsible for the entire bill. However, I was pleasantly surprised yesterday to receive an email stating that 90% of the charges would be returned to us. The amount of money they ate as a result of this situation was quite significant.

So, my hat is off to Yahoo. They showed a level of customer service that went above and beyond what they really needed to do.

We learned a few valuable lessons too. A daily cap in your Yahoo campaigns all of a sudden does not seem to be such a bad idea. The right press coverage can absolutely destroy your budget in the CPC arena.

I am reminded of a time a few years ago when we woke up to a huge number of international orders for a certain product. It turned out that Britney Spears had been photographed by paparazzi in Europe at the same moment that she dropped a bottle out of her purse. I have had a fondness for Britney ever since…

  • Always use a daily cap.

  • ml

    That is great that they worked with you on this. I know many advertisers wouldn’t even bother with a phone call assuming the worst.

    I would recommend a daily cap to everyone. They cap should be significantly higher than your average daily spend but something that you can live with in case something like this happens. This is especially true when launching a new campaign or making any significant changes that can have some unintended consequences.

    Good job Yahoo!

  • Personally, I am pleasantly surprised to see that they’ve reacted in this manner instead of simply stating that setting a daily cap was required and leaving it at that, they definitely deserve credit for the way they’ve acted.

    Alan Johnson

  • Prominent is spell with an “e” rahter than an “a”. Keep up the good job though

  • It is nice they are communicating to you, but great communication cant help poor converting traffic that they deliver.

  • Nice, I recently had some experience with Yahoo Search Marketing and I was knocked out with the level of Customer Service I was given. For an Internet Company they are certainly paving the way as far as I can tell.

    I still spend about 4 times more with Google, and get zero support and my ads blocked every so often for no reason (bad quality score), but Yahoo have given me a consultant that monitors my account for me and gives me a call if there are any issues I need to deal with and who constantly comes up with new ideas for my business.

  • It has been a very good behaviour. Congratulations to the Yahoo! customer service.

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  • You can get a advertising credit by signing up here Yahoo Search Marketing Credit Coupon.