Hunters & Browsers
Push vs. Pull
Reach & Frequency
Most traditional advertising and promotional media use a push system to deliver messages to potential customers. This program is interrupted for an important announcement from our sponsor. Direct mail appeals fill the letterbox. Telemarketers call during final Jeopardy. They're pushy: you are exposed to them whether you want to be, or not.
Another characteristic of the traditional advertising media is that most are one way asymetric. The advertiser talks, you listen. You can't talk back.
The Internet is different, and marketers who fail to take this into account, fail. The Internet, ideally, is a pull system. You attract web surfers to your home page and they come eagerly. Getting too pushy -- by sending unsolicited e-mail, for example -- is considered bad form and will earn you a bad reputation.
Rather than being one way asymetric, the communications model of the Internet is two way symetric. It's interactive: we both talk and we both listen. (Remember relationship marketing??)
The Internet has only been commercialized for about three years. There are areas of the Internet -- newsgroups, chat and e-mail discussion groups, for example -- that will turn nasty if you try to use them to blatantly promote your business. Commercial activity should be confined to areas where it is accepted and where people seek it out rather than have it shoved down their throats.
Next Section: Reach and Frequency
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