It has been 14 years since Seth Godin coined the term “Permission Marketing” in which he proposed that in front of a strange person, we had little chance of converting him directly into a client. This theory indicated that the process of selling a company should resemble the natural process that humans follow when interacting. To follow this rule, we had to turn strangers into friends and then it would be easier for us to convert friends into customers.
Most companies have lived these 14 years doing the exact opposite of what Seth Godin recommended. All our business actions are aimed at finding strangers, getting them to see our offer (as harassing as possible) and become our customers through exhaustion. Obviously the problems of this type of actions, are much more noticeable when we live in difficult economic environments like the current one.
In these 14 years some concepts have already appeared that reinforce the ideas of Seth Godin. Inbound Marketing or Attraction Marketing, are concepts that propose actions to carry out sales processes from the Internet. These actions must get people who are strangers to a brand, voluntarily leave their data and we can include them in our sales cycle.
Conventional marketing would be a kind of Outbound Marketing, where commercial actions are focused on appearing in front of potential customers and offering products without previously asking for permission. Some examples are: sending emails to people who do not expect to receive them; announcements on the radio, hoping that strangers are willing to buy us; announcements in the press, where if nobody knows us we inspire little confidence; Web pages where we say we are the best; profile on Facebook where we publish our products and nobody wants to know about them; Twitter account where we retweet everything we see to seem useful; so we can continue …
The marketing of attraction is criticized, the difficulty of creating valuable content to create the necessary relationship to convert a potential customer, into a final customer. Content formats can be articles, videos, ebooks, events, training, lectures, etc. Indeed, the creation of valuable content may not be so easy, but the cost of converting customers is much lower than traditional methods and is much more effective.