Every “learn that high demand skill [online ads]” course is bull shit. How do I know? Because I’ve run an absolutely obscene amount of digital ads, and I just had to explain to a VP of marketing that advertising online is actually still relevant.

I’ve been managing client ads since 2013, and I’ve run well over $100 million in ads. Those ads have driven at least $500 million in revenue for clients. Digital ads clearly make money. Being skilled in ads management is valuable, but it’s a competitive field, and only a fraction of the market understands the value.

I probably put together 60 bids for ads management a year. And even with the credentials I described above, I don’t sign anything close to 60 new contracts a year. Businesses have all kinds of reasons they don’t hire my ad agency.

The stumbling block for a chain of local restaurants was that ads didn’t work when the owner’s brother tried them a few years ago. The problem an auto parts seller had was fragmented departments with territorial department heads. And the CMO of a national liquor brand felt online ads broke their organic brand image.

It doesn’t matter that the brand sponsored concerts and had billboards. That putting PR in charge of the social ads budget while search marketing handled search ads is a bad business decision. Or that maybe a $500 ads test from several years ago may not indicate the medium won’t work for restaurants.

No salesperson will ever be able to overcome every emotional or logistical objection to running ads. Maybe the company just wants to keep things in house? Example, this classic email from someone who requested to meet with me years ago.

Even when companies not only run ads but hire a vendor, they have many options. Maybe they liked another venders pitch better? Perhaps, they want to hire a company with whom they have existing contracts; Or the vendor who offered them a better price. The list goes on forever.

I can guarantee you that taking a course on ads management isn’t going to have people beating your door down begging you to run ads for them. And while not a guarantee, the odds that the learn-to-run-ads course marketed on YouTube and Facebook is any good are not in your favor.

Photo by Hennie Stander on Unsplash