Which Method is Better: Selling-Based vs. Education-Based Marketing?

“This is Bobby Watts with Watts Discount Furniture, and I’m here to make you an offer you can’t refu…” *Click!*

What happens when this TV commercial or radio advertisement comes on the air? Do you sit through the entire message or tune out and switch off?

You’ve seen and heard the same sales pitch a million times before. Bobby wants to offer a once-in-a-lifetime deal made especially for you. …But if this man actually knew you, he’d see that all you really want is valuable information and helpful advice.

Odds are, your customers feel the same way. Spare them the canned sales pitch in favor of genuine and practical guidance.

If your company still decides to go with a selling-based marketing approach, here are the realities you can expect to encounter:

  • People have witnessed this sales process several times before, so they’ll do just about anything to avoid you. This results in a low ROI and a loss of valuable marketing dollars.
  • Prospects instinctively put up a defensive barrier when approached by the “salesman” type. They assume you’ll find a way to trick them into buying things they don’t need. You’ll put forth more effort trying to break through this barrier than if you had gone with an education-based approach from the beginning.
  • When consumers believe you’re only interested in them to make a quick buck, they automatically lose trust in your company and the information it provides. These negative feelings are, then, associated with your brand in the future.

Education-based marketing
, on the other hand, produces the following results:

  • People like your brand because you give them what they actually want, assistance without any agenda.
  • You create a positive experience for potential customers, relieving any fears they may have had.
  • Consumers will trust what you have to say without fear that you’re only trying to turn a profit.
  • You set yourself up as an authority on the matter. From then on, you become a trusted source for advice.
  • Likewise, you establish brand credibility and earn customer loyalty.
  • Rather than chasing down prospects, these people start coming to you.
  • You create a pool of potential leads by identifying only the qualified prospects.
  • You save time and money by marketing to and attracting the right people.
  • It becomes easier to monitor and measure your marketing efforts.

Tell us your story! Have you adopted the education-based marketing approach? What sort of results have you experienced?