Does the Same Old Marketing Work?


I have unsubscribed from just about all the newsletters I have ever received.  It’s not that I didn’t enjoy any of them but the majority of them were focused on selling and, while I would never say that’s the purpose of a newsletter (it’s to educate and provide value – another buzz word right now), it’s obvious that most people use it that way.  What I saw in most that I received was a bunch of information and then an ad for a free teleclass or webinar.  This is a typical format for funnel marketing…start with something free…and I suspect it still works on some occasions but I also think I’m not the only one who’s kind of tired of being invited to something free only to be immediately up-sold on something else.  Because the underlying intention is for the person to sell AND it is usually not done very well.

Most people are doing it because they are following some sort of marketing model and they don’t fully understand the science behind it so people aren’t being led into a buying relationship with the provider in a way that feels natural…that feels like a natural flow between them.  We can see that’s what they are trying to do and it doesn’t feel good so we often check out before we even know what they are selling.  People don’t like to feel manipulated.

A typical sales funnel looks like an upside down triangle and starts with free stuff or very cheap stuff at the top.  Then it moves down into things that cost a little more and a little more until you get to the bottom, which is where you’ll find the most expensive stuff.  It’s also done in a way where the top layers are mostly focused on marketing and then the bottom couple of layers are focused on sales.  These are just a couple of different formats out there but the concept is the same.

Here’s a concept I came across today, as I was writing this article, that I like it a lot better.  I feel like there is less focus on sales (although it’s included), which would naturally occur, and more of a focus on providing value (there’s that buzz word again which is for another conversation).

marketing funnel

I’ve just started thinking about where we are as a marketplace with techniques like this and am truly wondering how effective they still are and if others have done a lot of unsubscribing as I have or if I’m the odd man out here.  I’d love to hear your thoughts below.

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