What is Push and Pull Marketing?


It is argued that two types of marketing exisit.  Within digital marketing and marketing as a whole, strategies can be categorised as displaying either Push or Pull marketing techniques.

The fundamental difference between the two lies in how the consumer is approached by the firm. With Push Marketing, the notion of promotion is to push your product on to the consumer, as the consumer is not actively seeking your product, whereas Pull Marketing is associated with consumers actively seeking your product, in response to direct demand. If that doesn’t quite make sense yet, we’ve laid it out in a little more detail below.

Push Marketing

What is it?

Push marketing defines a promotional strategy in which businesses attempt to take their products to the customers – consumers are not actively seeking a product or service, but are introduced to it through active promotion such as billboards, TV advertising and cold-calling in the hope that they will develop a desire to engage in purchasing said product or service. Within digital marketing, Push Marketing is enacted by means of display advertising and cold-emailing, again placing the product or service directly in front of the consumer in the hope of raising brand awareness and ultimately, making a sale.

Overall, the term “Push” envelops the idea that marketers are attempting to push their products at consumers, flaunting their products to consumers. This form of marketing can therefore be associated with younger brands trying to build brand image and market share, and can be employed particularly effectively in marketing fast moving consumer goods, inducing higher rates of short term sales.

Examples of Push Marketing strategies:

– Face-to-face sales, for example in a showroom.
– Point of sale (POS) displays, such as brand named objects in a shop in order to attract attention and promote sales
– Trade Show promotion
– Attractive packaging design to encourage purchases

Examples of Push strategies within digital marketing

– Display advertising, whereby companies use text and logos to attract potential consumers who may not have otherwise seen the company
– Cold emails, this is a classic example of push marketing where the company will send out an email to people with a perceived interest in their product in order to increase brand recognition

Pull Marketing

What is it?

Pull marketing relies on much the opposite, in that consumers will actively seek out a brand for its products or services because they are already aware of its reputation. In terms of marketing, through intensive advertising, the aim is to establish a brand that becomes inherently linked with customer satisfaction, as products provide value for the end user. Therefore, what’s required from a digital marketing perspective is that consumers will be influenced by effective Search Engine Optimisation, Pay Per Click strategies, blogs, content marketing and Social Media campaigns and so come to the company of their own volition. Overall, pull marketing relies on the generation of brand loyalty and therefore growing rates of repeat custom.

Examples of Pull Marketing strategies:

– Extensive advertising campaigns, these are associated with intense marketing in order to promote an ideology and therefore brand loyalty, for example Porsche who conduct little constant advertising, yet the consumer seeks them.

Examples of Pull strategies within digital marketing

Search Engine Optimisation (SEO), whereby companies will attempt to promote their website as highly a possible on the organic results of a search engines findings in order to instigate interest.
Pay per Click (PPC) whereby a company will pay the publisher for each click their companies’ website receives. This form of pull marketing is conducted in order to attract the most appropriate people to your site and therefore increase the conversion rate.
Social Media, this involves promoting your brand to potential consumers via websites such as facebook or twitter.

Multi-Channel Marketing

Overall, most companies benefit the most from a balanced use of both strategies. For example, a start-up company cannot rely on Pull Marketing to bring in customers, as product awareness will not be high. Therefore, initial Push Marketing must be implemented in order to begin the establishment of brand recognition. Combined with a Pull strategy, this will begin to drive consumers towards a brand, and the use of re-marketing will consolidate consumers by reminding them of their interest through adverts placed on other sites they visit, and so pulling them closer to a final conversion to purchase. Many companies would love to rely solely upon a pull marketing strategy, with customers coming directly to them, intent upon purchase, but obviously it takes time and effort to establish such qualities in a brand. in all, both Push and Pull marketing strategies have their benefits and detriments, but a successful marketing campaign will certainly adopt the best of both worlds.

If you’re interested in learning more about Push and Pull, or just digital marketing in general, check out our range of training courses at Digital Kitchen. We offer SEO, PPC, CRO, Social Media and Content Marketing courses at beginner and advanced levels.