OSM Client Service System (“Web Pro v2”)

The Open Source Marketing Client Service System is a new project that aims to offer a positive alternative to the traditional marketing service model.

The traditional model is not ideal for clients, because the client must invest a significant amount of cash upfront, and the client takes all the risk. If the campaign is ill-conceived, fails to deliver, or delivers too slowly, the client gets the consequences, but the agency or marketer gets paid anyway.

If something could (or should) be improved over time, perhaps as circumstances change, clients have few options. Either they engage a full-service agency on retainer (which is expensive, considering the usually high fees agencies charge), or they take the risk of hiring individual freelance providers (e.g. in SEO, CRO, PPC, etc.).

Service providers are also compromised. Some projects require a wide range of skills, which these days means a large team. Others are much narrower. So small-scale agencies and freelancers can struggle to provide the required flexibility, and larger ones can suffer from higher overheads.

The OSM Client Service System is designed to deliver greater benefits to both clients and marketing professionals. It is distinguished by…

  • Preferring revenue-share joint ventures, rather than fee-based financial agreements. This encourages…
    • Long-term thinking and relationship between the client and their marketing team.
    • Selection of the best, most viable projects, based on true potential, not just the client’s ability to pay.
    • On-going positive collaboration for the benefit of the project.
    • Minimizes the client’s investment up-front, but accelerates growth and maximizes investment in the medium-term.
    • Also maximizes revenues for the marketing team, creating a win-win scenario.
  • Flexible delivery teams assembled from a network of professionals on a project-by-project basis.
    • This means clients do not have to pay a premium to cover agency overheads, including redundant manpower and premises.
    • We are developing a system for organising the project team’s internal revenue sharing.

The system is at a very early stage, and the team is developing it on several fronts concurrently.

As soon as we are happy it’s workable, we’ll document and share, so that other groups can pick up and start using OSMCS to create long-term win-win relationships.

Update, 21 September 2015

In the early prototype of this system, we used an online Game Board to track the stage of each project (i.e. flow chart with movable counters representing projects).

Each project currently also had a Project Log spreadsheet, which has a tab for each project stage. Teams work through the tabs in order. (This is not ready to share yet.)

The latest direction (September 2015) is to move away from the idea of project teams, as this proved clumsy and complicated to manage. Instead, we’re focusing on having a single campaign lead, which corresponds directly to the “Marketing Strategist” role described in “Web Design is Dead”. This individual will take responsibility for designing and executing the marketing strategy, pulling in other specialist resources as needed, thereby removing some of the complexity of the earlier model (specifically internal revenue sharing within a team).

Ben Hunt is currently working out this model with a few real client projects. Hopefully, we’ll be able to prove the model by early 2016.

Projection Showing How Both Client & Team Revenues Are Maximized in a Joint Venture

(8 minutes) Ben shares a Google spreadsheet that shows how both parties benefit, even with modest incremental growth.

View & copy the spreadsheet


Proof that JV Revenue Share Projects Can Be Win-Win

(8 minutes)


+ Update Launching Web Pro v2 (November 2015)

Ben's Introduction to Web Pro v2

Nov 23rd, 2015

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Jason Pelker

I also added a column for marketer revenue (since that number helps determine whether the project is profitable for me).

I think the formula is similar to C2, just without adding one to the percentage:


Jason Pelker

Oops. take home is actually: =C2*(G$2)

And here’s a copy of my changes: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1157ZhIWvQRlGVyEmminh4Kr8Q4OpNjDTs9DR6eevcMQ/edit?usp=sharing

I also added a few row to total up the various numbers, since I think it’s important to choose project based on a minimum annual spend (you want fewer, higher paying projects–an annual spend around $30-50K is a good place to start).

Web Pro 2 - This Changes Everything! - Ben Hunt

[…] will be an open-source project (an evolution of the OSM Client Service system). We’ll publish the “how-to” so that anyone can pick up and use the Web Pro 2 […]

Gayle Joubert

Hi Ben,
Have you got any further with this idea?

    Ben Hunt

    Hi Gayle. I haven’t specifically developed this further as a model, but it still works in principle. I am however in discussions with a number of potential partners following this invitation, and we’ll certainly be looking at win-win partnerships similar to the Web Pro 2 concept.

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