When most people think of marketing, they think of pushing information to as many channels as possible (television, radio, billboard, flyers, newspapers, magazines, mailers, trade shows, showrooms, skywriters, etc.). The bigger the audience, the higher the likelihood to get noticed. That worked well when there were few channels that had a rapt audience. It was efficient and simple. Nowadays, such blanketing efforts requires a large budget to cover the ever-increasing marketing channels.
Pull marketing seeks to connect with people who are looking for what you have, when they need it. That means you need to first understand who‘s looking:
- Where are they located?
- What age range are they typically?
- Income level?
- When do they look?
Then, where are your audience looking for solutions:
- Online Search?
- 3rd party Independently verifiers?
And you’ll need to understand how they ask for help finding solutions:
- Is it a phrase they type into search engines?
- Are there already expert communities that serve this group?
- Are they looking for proven answers or clues?
Once you understand their process, you can put yourself in the right spot to be discovered. You’ll still need to do your homework clearly articulating your message, but for each different location they look you have the ability to craft an appropriately targeted message – that shows you’re attuned to their needs and terminology.
The right mix of push and pull marketing isn’t an absolute number. It’s based on studying the effects of your marketing efforts over time, and revisiting assumptions you make (what worked last year may no longer work this year). A trade show + pay-per-click campaign may be the right mix for your business.
If you’re just starting out, think pull. Push is too expensive and you likely don’t know why/if people will purchase from you. Use pull to learn about your prospective customers first, then introduce push once you’re sure you’re targeting them well.