Outbound Marketing Is Dead -- Hogwash

Some online and social media proponents are proclaiming that inbound is replacing outbound marketing activities and that we are seeing a healthy and dramatic shift from promoting products to 100% customer engagement.

These proponents point out that outbound marketing is dead or will be in the next few years. Why? Because interruptive marketing to get people's attention doesn't work anymore.

Pardon my bluntness, but this is baloney.

I think there has always been a crying need to engage the customer. It's just that today customer expectations are higher due to the power of an interactive network we call the Internet.

Some wrongly conclude, however, that the need to announce our products or spread the word using any channel has or is going the way of the dodo bird.

Outbound advertising has existed since the caveman who put out his sign saying "Wheel Maker Here" and will always be a part of a free society.

Social media is essentially word of mouth and PR on steroids. Customers now converse with one another about a given product -- and the companies that produce them can chime in. But this by no means eliminates the need to get the message out to prospects who know little or nothing about our products.

Bottom line: we must continue to be "push driven" outbound marketers while also engaging in conversation with our customers through social media. One does not diminish the other in any way.

This is not wholesale change, but an enhancement enabled by technology.

Posted on March 27, 2013 and filed under Online Marketing, Social Media.