We’ve never encountered this before, but it’s happening. Be prepared.  The facts:

  • METRO CLIENT: Good-sized client in the biggest market in the US with a big budget.
  • GETTING TONS OF PHONE CALLS “LOOKING FOR JOBS”: The Google ads did not mention hiring at all.
  • SOME PHONE CALLS ASKED FOR COMPETITORS SERVICES: Callers asked if this were “___________”?  Name of competitor.
  • CLIENT NOT HAPPY: You can imagine. They want to know what’s going on. We were perplexed. A misdirected prospect can make a mistake about the intent of the ad, but not in big numbers like this…20-30 calls.
  • RESEARCH. RESEARCH. RESEARCH: We have all forms of tracking on our Google Ads. Some provided by Google. Some provided by third-party vendors that we hire.
  • SAME ADDRESS WAS UNCOVERED: While the phone numbers were all different, and the callers were well trained to defect the client’s questions, we were able to trace them to one building in Brooklyn which was already known online for scammers.
  • ADS REEXAMINED AND LOCKED DOWN: Certain Google Ads products are now run by AI and are more difficult to precisely manage. They were being hacked.
  • ADVERTISING NOW RUNNING FLAWLESSLY: It can be done. It does require giving up some tools.


If you are seeing poor conversion percentages check your Call Detail logs and other tracking metrics that you have. We have never seen so many conversions at such a low conversion cost as now, but we have now learned that there are scammers out there, probably hired by your competition to drive you away from Google Ads because they don’t want the competition. Beware!