Push Pull Marketing: Not the funny looking Animal

Push Pull Marketing — Sounds a little like the Dr. Dolittle animal with 2 heads, but it’s not.

The phrase “Push Pull” in Marketing it means something different.

Push is a promotion that pushes through the channel trying to get a listing. (I think of ramming it down someone’s throat, it’s easy to remember push.) Not as pleasant.

Examples of marketing methods that are

  • Telemarketing
  • TV Advertising
  • Ads on shopping carts, billboards and magazines
  • Up front trailers before a video
  • Junk mail
  • Spam

Nobody really asked to see it, the message just blared out — pushing at the consumer/customer.

On the other hand, there are techniques of pulling the product through the channel. People want it. They not only want it, they are asking for it.

Examples of marketing methods that are

  • Cross sell little stuffers that encourage people to “collect them all” that they carry into a store and ask the clerk, “Do you carry this WebKin? It’s what my neice is asking for.” The store clerk goes to the manager and the manager ends up telling the district buyer, “better get more of those Webkins in here, the kids are crazy for them.” (Or Cabbage Patch Kids, or Transformers, or Go-Go Bones, or Pokemon cards or what ever is hot in kid circles this quarter!!)
  • When someone goes into the doctor and asks “Is this medicine right for me?” and the doctor doesn’t typically perscribe that brand. They might have heard about the medicine via a traditional advertising medium, but rather than directly buying it, they are asking the channel to provide it to them.
  • When the consumer types a search phrase into google and finds an on-line catalog they’ve never known before that will sell them the special brand of duck hunting boots they’ve searched high and low for because their cousin swears by those boots. Then they discover the catalog doesn’t have that version of them so they call the 800 number and ask to special order them.

You get the idea. One way is more traditional where the manufacturer is screaming and screaming how great their product in which they may do through something similar to signage in Brisbane to boost their brand visibility. The other is more the end user is asking the channel to supply the product to them by getting it from the manufacturer.

Author: Chris Brown

Business owner operating a marketing consulting firm. Online Publisher. Keynote Speaker.