Push vs. Pull Marketing: What They Are And How To Use Them

From: Ameen Kamadia

I was in San Francisco last week. My wife and I stayed there a couple days while we took a week off to celebrate our 1 year wedding anniversary.

The last day of our stay, we decided to eat Chinese food, and being tourists, we wanted to eat in Chinatown. So we drove there, found parking on a very steep hill, (Never had to use both feet to drive an automatic before) and started walking around looking for a place to eat.

If you have been there, you know that there are hundreds of small restaurants all over. Our tour guide from the previous day had advised us that most of them are not very good and the best way to tell was if the place was busy. Makes sense, doesn't it? That's why I advise you to keep stacks of files around your office so prospects can see them.

Anyway, we are walking down the street and see a place call Silver Restaurant that looks good. As we are looking over the menu posted outside, a woman comes over and hands me a coupon for a restaurant right across the street. "Free Appetizer. Free Ice Cream. Good Food." She tells us. I look at the coupon, and it says they are celebrating their 85th anniversary. Hmm, I think to myself, they must be good if they have been open that long.

So we decided to check it out and start to walk across the street, but my wife paused for a second. The Chinese woman basically pushed us into the street and "escorted us" to the front door. That's where I stopped to see if a) I liked the menu and b) if there was anyone inside. It didn't seem like there was, and the prices were almost double of the other place. No wonder they give free ice cream. So we decided against it, handed back the coupon and walked back across the street to eat at the Silver Restaurant.

Side Note: Even after all that, I was up all night vomiting because of the food poisoning I got at the Silver Restaurant. Oh well.

So what can we learn from this?

In the story, there are two main types of marketing. The Silver Restaurant used Pull Marketing where the door was open, they had an attractive window with ducks, chickens, and pigs roasting in the window. The other restaurant was using Push marketing, salesmen on the street to give out coupons, and push people into the restaurant.

In our case, the pull marketing was more effective because the push got too aggressive. But the push almost worked. If the prices were similar and the woman had not physically pushed us, we probably would have eaten there. Why? Because she asked us to. And, we thought we were getting a deal - free ice cream, and because they had been open for 85 years (blowing their own horn), and because we didn't know the difference between the two.

Which of these two styles do you use?

Do you simply advertise and wait for people to come in or to call you? Or do you have a way to push them to you?

Which one should you use?

I suggest you use both styles.

  • If a prospect cannot tell the difference between you and your competition then you need to find a way to portray yourself as different (push).
  • When they come to you, they need to feel that you are competent and knowledgeable (pull).
  • You should have people referring you to others (push). Learn more about this in Referrals on Demand.
  • They should have a strong reason to choose you (push)
  • You should offer everything they need (pull)
  • You should take care of all their needs (pull)

If you are having trouble generating prospects, then you need to do a whole lot more pushing. If you have prospects but not enough of them are converting into loans, you need to work on your pulling.

Use these two styles together to get people to you and convince them that you are the one they need to work with.

Happy Originating!




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