Larson Electronics, citing lead data issues, has cancelled its advertising contract with Florida-based Maritime Executive, which distributes a print magazine, digital newsletter and a website under the Maritime Executive name. In a press release issued on October 20th, the Kemp, Texas-based electronics firm said Maritime Executive provided contact information associated with lead generating digital campaigns purported to be interested prospects, but the firm found that many of those prospects did not click on the ads and do not read Maritime Executive, while many more leads were found to be not valid or not in use.
Larson Electronics ended the relationship with the publisher after a comprehensive review of responses to a variety of digital campaigns, including e-blasts, e-newsletters and web ad placements. Some of these digital programs produce “leads”, which Maritime Executive claimed were people who clicked on Larson ads within their digital campaigns, presumably because they were interested in learning more about the product.
“There are so many issues with Maritime Executive it is hard to wrap my head around them all,” said Rob Bresnahan with Larson Electronics LLC. “It is not clear yet whether all campaigns we were billed for actually ran, but we definitely have issues with the leads generated by the campaigns that did run.”
Bresnahan said that the leads from Maritime Executive were email addresses only, which struck him as unusual. He also noticed several hundred leads from attorneys at large firms. “We advertised explosion proof LED lights for hazardous location areas in these campaigns,” he said. “These are products that make sense for tankers, refineries, chemical processing centers and docking areas where oil and other chemicals are routed on and off transport vessels. Not lawyers.”
Bresnahan said seven partners from one firm ‘responded’ to one ad in one e-newsletter on one day. “It just would not happen,” he said. “In calling and emailing these ‘leads’, we found that many do not read Maritime Executive in any form and did not click on the links in their digital campaigns seeking more information.”
Bresnahan said email responses showed that many of these attorneys had left these firms years ago, many of the emails were not valid and the valid ones did not recognize Maritime Executive and had no interest in the product.
Bresnahan said a statistically significant number of the people in the lists offered as leads “are not Maritime Executive readers and never clicked on our ad in any of their campaigns.” Bresnahan says, “If these people are the ones clicking on our ad in their digital campaign and coming to our site, how is that possible when these people don’t exist, don’t read Maritime Executive or stopped using that email 5 or 6 years ago?”
Bresnahan says his company gave Maritime Executive a summary of their analysis of these campaigns, “but their response so far has included posting derogatory statements about our company and me on the Web, screaming obscenities at one of the order processing people here and implying a physical confrontation,” which Bresnahan says he would be delighted to accommodate.
Larson Electronics carries an extensive line of LED light towers, portable power distributions, explosion proof lights for hazardous locations, portable work lights and industrial grade LED area lights.