A pull strategy is a marketing approach in which a company creates demand for its product or service by promoting it directly to consumers. This approach is designed to generate interest and excitement among consumers, encouraging them to seek out the product or service on their own.
Pull strategies are often used when a company has a well-established brand or when it is launching a new product or service. The goal of a pull strategy is to create a strong and positive emotional connection with consumers, encouraging them to choose the company’s product or service over competitors.
Pull strategies often rely on advertising and other forms of promotion to reach consumers. This can include television and radio commercials, print ads, online ads, and other forms of marketing. The key is to create a compelling message that resonates with consumers and encourages them to take action.
One of the advantages of a pull strategy is that it allows companies to have more control over their marketing efforts. By directly promoting their products or services to consumers, companies can better control the messaging and positioning of their products. This can help to increase brand awareness and build consumer trust.
However, pull strategies can also be challenging, as they require a significant investment in marketing and advertising. In addition, there is no guarantee that consumers will respond to the messaging, and it can be difficult to measure the effectiveness of a pull strategy. The following are illustrative examples of a pull strategy.
Advertising & Promotion
Both push and pull strategies can use advertising and promotion but in difference ways. Push tries to sell. Pull tries to build brand awareness and engagement. For example, a soft drink commercial that does nothing but associate a positive feeling with a brand.
Reputation such as a small restaurant that is known in a neighborhood as consistently tasty, friendly, atmospheric and affordable.
Generating demand with a more pleasing user experience. For example, a gaming mouse company that has never advertised but is always backlogged on orders because their products are perceived as exceptionally fun to use.
Offering an experience that people may view as an accomplishment. This will tend to promote itself. For example, if you offer camping trips by horseback, customers will be likely to share this experience in media and by word of mouth.
Building trust in a robust and time consuming way is associated with pull. For example, a mobile device company that slowly but surely establishes trust by fiercely protecting customer data privacy year after year.
Deep engagement with customers that isn’t focused on closing sales such as a software consultant who directly tries to solve big problems for a customer. This can be contrasted with a consultant who tries to push products and platforms without true regard to solving problems.
Working to deliver products and services that meet customer needs better than the competition. For example, an electronic bike with significant range that is also reasonably light that generates demand from customers that have experienced running out of power on a heavy bike.
Offering greater variety can generate demand. For example, a cake shop that offers 60 types of cake with a display case that inspires a sense of wonder.
Delivering a product or service in an unusually predictable and reliable way. For example, a delivery service that never looses or delays orders. This may attract significant demand from large customers such as firms.
Comfort & Convenience
Making things more comfortable and convenient for the customer. For example, the pub that is closest to a business district.
Beating the competition on price or total cost of ownership. For example, a firm that offers ink tank printers that drive the price of ink per page towards zero.
Offering alternatives to unpopular legal terms and conditions such as a mobile phone company that allows you to cancel at any time with no penalty and a final bill prorated to the day you cancel.
Creating a firm around some real benefit to people and planet and then telling this story in a compelling way. For example, a hotel that closes its beach and works with conservation organizations to preserve habitat for sea turtles during nesting season. Acts like this tend to garner respect and loyalty.
Offering unique quality levels that are in demand. For example, the only budget hotel with a good rating in a tourist area.
Engaging in some authentic pursuit that is meaningful to you. For example, the only truly authentic Japanese sushi shop in a European capital.
Building a firm and/or brand that is steeped in social status. For example, a night club that gains a carefully cultivated reputation for attracting celebrities based largely on the personal connections, reputation and charisma of the owner and key staff.
Going beyond the customer service of competitors. For example, an airline that builds a superior service culture where the poor service offered by competitors is unthinkable and impossible.
Attention to detail with regard to the customer experience. For example, a rechargeable battery brand that works diligently to improve minor details that the competition ignore such as pleasing to open packaging.
Focusing on constantly improving offerings. For example, a carpenter who tries to improve on their work with each job such that they eventually have excessive demand from satisfied customers and referrals.
The network effect is when a product or service is more valuable when more people use it. For example, a night club that only opens when it has an offer that’s sure to bring in crowds that gains a reputation for being lively.
Reverse Network Effect
A product or service is often more valuable when less people use it. For example, a tour company that caps tours at 7 people to offer adventure and comradeship as opposed to the commoditized experience of large tour groups.