In a world increasingly cluttered with marketing messages, how can your brand be heard? Permission marketing, coined and popularized by Seth Godin, is the opposite of traditional interruption marketing. Instead, permission marketing is about building an ongoing relationship of increasing depth with customers. Let’s get started!
Marketing Messages Are Everywhere
We are inundated with marketing messages coming at us every waking minute, through every interaction in our world. It makes for a poor brand experience, let me tell you!
We, as consumers, have become accustomed to ignoring or filtering out messages that don’t immediately catch our attention, meet our needs or desires, or improves our quality of life. For so long, marketing used disruptive tactics to gain attention and, in some ways force potential customers into making a decision, ready or not.
The Big Assumption
The big problem with disruptive marketing brand experience is that it is making the assumption that the prospective customer is interested in the product or service. In fact, the prospective customer may not be interested at all and because they were ambushed with disruptive marketing, they may actually choose to not interact with the brand at all.
Enter Permission Marketing and a New Brand Experience
Way back in 1999, Seth Godin coined the term “Permission Marketing” and wrote a book on the very subject. In it, he argues that permission marketing is the privilege (not the right) of delivering anticipating, personal and relevant messages to people who actually want to get them.
What a concept!
Godin writes in a blog post from 2008 the following about permission marketing:
It recognizes the new power of the best consumers to ignore marketing. It realizes that treating people with respect is the best way to earn their attention.
Pay attention is a key phrase here, because permission marketers understand that when someone chooses to pay attention they are actually paying you with something precious. And there’s no way they can get their attention back if they change their mind. Attention becomes an important asset, something to be valued, not wasted.
Here’s How it is Different from Traditional Marketing
To put it simply, outbound marketing is another name for traditional marketing. These may include things such as:
- television ads
- print ads
- direct mail
- outdoor advertising
- trade shows
All of these methods are interruptive, pushing products and services to the forefront and vying for attention. One of the main problems with these strategies is that you may not be attracting your ideal audience, which makes the cost of advertising less effective. With modern communications technology allowing consumers to escape and avoid these interruptions, it is becoming a relic of the past.
What is Inbound or Permission Marketing
The Inbound marketing brand experience focuses on pulling audiences in who are interested rather than trying to gain a prospect’s attention. These strategies can increase brand exposure and creates brand authority through valuable content.
Key Differences Between Inbound and Outbound Marketing
The big difference between the two marketing methods is communication. Outbound marketing relies on mass media where communication is a one-way street. Think of it as a broadcast message on the radio or a television ad. The consumer has no real way to communicate back to the brand.
With inbound marketing, people can interact and engage with the brand. They can send email, leave comments on blogs or podcasts, post on social media, or leave a review on a third-party site like iTunes or Yelp.
The key to success with inbound marketing is being transparent, honest, and actively engaging with your target audience. Having a direct link to your audience allows you to uncover hidden problems, create brand loyalty, and deepen relationships, fusing the brand and the audience together.
25 Persuasive Keys to Email Marketing [ToolKit Guide]
What’s Your Take?
Do you prefer to receive messages from brands that you have given permission to hear from versus being interrupted to hear about a product or service that may have no effect on improving your life? As a brand, do you implement permission marketing strategies? How has it improved the brand experience you deliver to your customers?
I’d love to hear your feedback! Leave a comment below or connect with me on Twitter @BWarsinske.