Failure deemed as ‘human and process error’ by CEO, Steve Lucas ; self-described tech geek and customer come to the rescue.
In a classic example of ‘nobody’s perfect’, customers of the high-impact marketing automation software provider Marketo, were locked out of their accounts because of the company’s failure to renew its domain name – Marketo.com.
Company representatives took immediate steps to respond to social media alerts posted by attentive and in some cases worried clients and subsequently apologized to everyone who was affected. The domain remained out of reach of clients for several hours and what caused more havoc was the realization that various other associated properties including app access were affected. For now, Marketo has defined the issue as ‘largely resolved’.
Travis Pebble, an application engineer, and customer of Marketo is supposed to have rescued Marketo by diffusing the problem and playing ‘good samaritan’ by choosing to renew their domain name on Marketo’s behalf.
Steve Lucas, CEO, Marketo, was quick to respond after the news surfaced. He stated, “I want to sincerely apologize to you and on behalf of the entire Marketo team as we take any disruption to your service very seriously.”
Lucas spotted the focal point of this matter and added, “We renew thousands of domain name properties we own every year with precision, yet the auto renew process for registering our main domain, Marketo.com, failed. This catalyzed a cascading series of issues, but ultimately human and process error are to blame and again, we take full responsibility.”
The CEO is also committed to ensuring that such a blunder is not repeated and has internally addressed the company. He is also seeking a comprehensive review of the operation processes at Marketo to establish adequate ‘fail-safe protocols’.
The news of the domain issue came to the fore after Marketo received complaints from customers as their reporting systems went down. Since company emails also use the same domain name which is linked to track interactions of users, millions of forms, images and hyperlinks disappeared.
Even though Pebble renewed the Marketo domain, he still did not have the rights to enter the control panel of the domain. Hence, the name servers of the domain could not be altered and moved by him from ‘pending renewal deletion’ to the company’s servers. A few hours later, Marketo was able to get this done by its internal domain professional.