You Can’t Push Me Around Anymore!

“We are at a critical inflection point in our business evolutionary path, with consumers wrestling away power and control from the camps of traditional marketing wisdom.”

Pushed brands and products become an unintended, uninvited distraction to internet savvy consumers if not smartly gathered and relevantly engaged through socially preferred mindsets. Push advertising can no longer stand alone, can no longer effectively make or take a market as a solitary art form. Push advertising is more than just consumer ineffective, it is financially disabling for any brand who cannot pinpoint-target their best buying audience at a place and time they are most willing to engage.

Pulling consumers saves precious time to market. Pulling profitably invests and smartly hoards market opportunity for your brand, for your company. The most effective and profitable consumer pull is either in congress with social engagements or vested at the last three feet of the sale in the brick or cloud retail aisle. The most effective and profitable marketing abates push monologues, creates socially engaged pull dialogues in the cloud, in physical retail locations. Omni-channel marketing therefore is pull marketing… not push marketing.

Within our new pull-centric-economy consumers have already individually and collectively united as content publishers while simultaneously becoming “search-engine-addicts.” They trust and cherish their social environments, have limited time for pushy distractions as they e-hunt and e-pull across varying pieces of glowing glass for what matters to them, not what matters to brands, products and services. Consumers today hunt and pull content, information and knowledge which is most relevant, engaging and valuable to them: not to you, not to your brand. The point? Well actually, there are two points.

First, I am willing to bet you cannot remember one pushed TV, radio or internet commercial from last night, let alone the day before yesterday. Why don’t you remember the ads? Mostly because the ads are not relevant to you. The ads do not deliver the dignity of product knowledge (features, advantages and benefits) you crave as a potential shopper. Instead, the ads are metaphoric and attempt to be comical leaving savvy consumers frustrated, disappointed and confused. Hence, “flip, flip and goodbye” through the remote control, through the mouse. Truly a waste of time, money and resources let alone winding up with the largest museum of failed products with this old school method of monologue message pushing.

The second point is evolution is revolution for those who auger it, for those who recognize it. Today, in order to have consumers lean in to build market opportunity for your brand you must completely recast your push methods, your strategy and tactics to the new consumer order-of-engagement methodology. You need to place a big sign up in your office declaring your marketing, advertising and communications department is officially “Under Construction.

Your re-construction sagacity and strategy needs to move your company from expensive and widely pushed monologues to narrow, and relevant pull dialogues. Less expensive, yes. Much harder to focus on yet much more valuable when accomplished, yes. We are in a critical inflection point in our businesses evolutionary path with consumers wrestling away power and control from the camps of traditional marketing wisdom. Today, the consumer is the great socially enabled message gate keeper and your best brand pylon… and not the aggressive ad agency pushing old school, wide and portly marketing nets which are expensive, sluggish, irritating metaphoric advertising.

To ensure you are pulling consumers and not pushing them away, I offer four tectonic-pillars for successful “new school” publishing for marketers seeking to make, take or break into a market:

  1. Absolute pinpoint site relevancy through your social-pull communications to: the audience you seek. To the audience you serve, the audience who will willfully, gleefully and socially amplify your one to one proposition kinetically.
  2. Core down and heavy up your social investments and messaging resources on your very best, most relevant and active opportunities (buyers).
  3. Deliver relevant, highly valuable content, not metaphoric pap, to those who have the will, the need and the means to socially take action for themselves.
  4. Understand your potential buyers by acting, selling and marketing like a Publisher. Publishers start with a content strategy designed to target a particular buying audience. They ask “who are my readers, how do I reach them, what are their motivations, what are their content-informational needs, how can I help them, how can I better serve them then my competition? They ask and deliver on “what content and packaging will compel them to share and purchase my product, my brand?”

The old school of interruptive, monologue push advertising and marketing entails purchasing expensive, hard to measure and quantify metaphoric advertisements. Our new school of highly relevant social marketing dialogues recognizes consumers want authenticity, not spin. They want peer-social participation, not ad propaganda. They want and frankly demand on time communications from you (right time, right place and right product) not irrelevant, metaphoric product interruptions. They want engagement and dialogue, not monologues across broad market push.

Engagement marketing, make that socially networked dialogue marketing is made up of consumer generated blogs, chat rooms, social engagements, consumer reviews, editorial reviews and relevant friend facts; not metaphoric fiction. Dialogue and engagement drives results, drives sales. Within our Omni-channel, web centric, hyper changing, short product and pricing cycles, relevant social engagements and open brand dialogue works dramatically better than intrusive push marketing. Brand and retail marketers always need to set the offer stage but understand and expect it is the consumer that grabs and owns the stage microphone, owns the socially charged consumer audience. Market leaders know you cannot push consumers around anymore. Simply stated: “stop the monologue, pull the dialogue” to super-fuel short and long term market advantage.

Peter Weedfald is the author of Green Reign Leadership.

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