Can't Buy Me Love

10 years ago, I moved into a new office and started using a travel agent across the street to book business travel. She never once tried to solicit my personal leisure travel, although I did have her book hotel rooms in Europe about 4 years after I'd begun to use her.

Her effort on my personal travel was, to say the least, lame. Didn't seem like she cared to be doing it, and I pretty much stopped using her for anything after that. About the same time their agency joined a travel agency consortium called Virtuoso, and I started receiving Virtuoso's quarterly glossy leisure travel brochures, overprinted with the local agency's name and address.

I've never received a personal call from them—over 10 years—to solicit my leisure travel, and the one time they did a trip for me they put in a weak effort. Yet, they're spending money 4x/year to send me leisure travel brochures that I'm not responding to.

Why do people think that the secret to marketing is to pay someone to do it for you? Great marketing isn't something you can buy. You have to do it.