Why You Need to Know How Permission Marketing Has Changed

Back in 2000, Seth Godin defined the new advertising arena with his book Permission Marketing. In that book he taught us how to “turn strangers into friends into customers.”

It was a monument in the advertising landscape. It declared the death of traditional media methods and the emergence of the most effective and profitable way to advertise with people: ask for their permission to advertise to them.

Since then, that concept has evolved.

How Permission Marketing Has Changed

It’s evolved into an environment where more and more control is given to the consumer. The amount of choices for a consumer has flourished. He now chooses not only what messages he will watch, read or listen to…

He chooses how.

This is the idea behind the principle of “the path of consumption” and it represents the changes in Godin’s original idea. It’s an economic model adopted and modified my marketers. In a nutshell, this is what it means: we’ve all heard the refrain that people learn differently…

Some learn by doing. Some learn by watching. Others learn by hearing. Still others, a combination of all three.

Why is this important? Easy. If you want to reach the widest (and still profitable) audience, then you need to figure out how that audience is consuming messages. And then craft and present your message around those mediums.

Three Examples of Message Consumption

Yeah, that usually means that you need to provide the same message in more than one medium.

For example, if you are the top listing agent in your market because you’ve developed an irresistible listing presentation, then that message needs to go in at least three places.

1. Your mind. 

Once you’ve figured out what your unique value proposition (for example, top listing agent in your market because you developed an irresistable presentation), you then need to craft that message into an elevator speech.

2. The public. 

Once you’ve streamlined this message into a tight, potent elevator pitch, head out of the office and start talking to people. Talk to people at networking events. Go to social media events. Travel to conferences. Host neighbourhood clean-up. Get out and start telling people why you are the agent they should work with.

3. Your website. 

Tell your readers in the copy. Tell them in a video. And tell them in audio. Tell them the same message in these three very different channels. That way you don’t have to choose who you’ll promote to. You simply choose the channels to promote the message in. Let your prospect choose the path of consumption.

Of course, this means you have to know who your prospect is. If you’re a fan of personae, then you already know who they are. If you don’t know who they are, you need to get on the ball and figure it out.

Let me show you why this is important.

The Numbers Don’t Lie

In a late 2010 report by Neilson Mobile, people under 24 years of age represent over 71 percent of those who text in America. That’s a huge audience.

However, that demographic only accounts for 5% of home buyers. The largest group of home buyers is from the age 25 to 34 years of age, at 33%. The next group, 35 to 44, represent 23 percent.

After all the numbers are in, do you know what the average home buyer age is? It’s thirty-nine, a group who sends about a tenth of the texts the younger demographic does.

How You Can Capture the Largest Profitable Audience

Here’s my point. If all you do is provide options for texting, you are going to limit those who respond to your messages.

Now, I don’t believe anyone would actually do this (almost every agent I know provides at least a phone number to call, in addition to texting options). But it should force you to think about other channels to communicate in.

Can you create a weekly email newsletter to promote to those who like the comfort and traditional feel of their inbox versus a feed reader? Can you create a video sales letter where all you are doing is moving the reader through your sales message–but in a video, like Stansberry Research is doing?

Can you create a monthly podcast that interviews real estate experts (experts could range from loans to interior decorating) in your market?

The more channels you provide the larger–and more profitable–your audience becomes.

Leave a comment if this post was helpful or if you have anything you’d like to add. And if you like what you read, subscribe to the Real Estate Marketing Blog.

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Click Here to Leave a Comment Below 4 comments
mikec (@blogboy2)

Liked this a lot. I guess the time element is probably the biggest hindrance to taking advantage of the many different mediums available for communication. And the skill element, too. The real estate professional that can keep their schedule in balance (without neglecting the family, etc) and learn new technologies (and put them into practice) is the one that will survive into the future.

    Gary Elwood

    I think you are right, Mike. That balance is key. Of course there will be seasons of feast and famine, so making that part work, too, is important. Thanks for stopping by!

Jared Gruber

Nice post. I never quite thought about it in those terms. I’m adding you to my google reader so that I can keep tabs on your articles!

    Gary Elwood

    Hey thanks Jared. I always appreciate hearing that we pick up a new reader. Let me know if there are any topics or questions I could answer for you. Take care.


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