Permission Marketing Chapter 5 – All about trust
By Optism Team, Aug 5, 2011
Optism provides permission-based, mobile marketing services. Providing the opportunity for mobile subscribers to opt-in to advertising messages based on their preferences is the core tenant of our service. Our blog series Permission Marketing in the News has been highlighting mobile and other permission marketing news for the past year. The leading proponent of permission marketing is Seth Godin who coined the term in his book Permission Marketing in 1999. To celebrate our one year anniversary, we are running a series of blog posts summarizing his book chapter by chapter and analyzing how changes in the mobile and advertising marketplace have impacted the recommendations in his book.
In Chapter Five, Seth tells us that “without trust…there are no sales.” People want to buy from companies they trust. In fact, we’re often willing to pay a little extra to deal with a company that we trust. Trust gives us confidence that the product we’re buying will deliver what we want and that if it doesn’t, we’ll be treated fairly by the seller. It lowers our risk as consumers and that encourages us to open our wallets. “Trust, almost without exception, leads to profit.”
It’s not something, however, that can be created instantly, regardless of how innovative an advertising campaign is. Trust, Seth points out, is built over time. It’s the by-product of a process that in the modern world starts with advertising. Advertising build awareness. With time and frequent repetition, that awareness grows into familiarity. Finally, with careful management and attention to customer relationships, familiarity becomes trust.
Advertising → Awareness → Familiarity → Trust
The value of reach vs. repetition in advertising. Seth believes that given a choice between reach and repetition, many marketers would opt for reach. They would choose, for example, a single 30 second Super Bowl commercial or full page ad in The New York Times – advertising that commands a premium price because of its reach. He argues, however, that you’d probably get a better ROI if you put your money on repetition. Why? Because “a single ad, no matter how well produced, no matter how compelling, is almost never enough to sell your product.”
It takes time and repetition for your message to sink in. Time for the audience to stop focusing on the hook you used to grab their attention and start listening to your message. And repetition to get through the clutter of advertising that is everywhere today. In traditional (interruption) marketing, repetition or frequency is expensive. Fortunately, permission marketing makes frequency more effective and technology dramatically reduces or eliminates the costs. According to Seth, “Permission Marketing is the tool that makes frequency work.”
Today, the thing that is in shortest supply is people’s attention, and that, says Seth, is a game changer. “Creating value through interaction is far more important than solving a consumer’s problem in thirty seconds.” As we’ve seen, permission marketing gives you access to frequency but “it replaces continuing interruption with ongoing interaction.”
Permission mobile marketing, which has evolved since Seth wrote his book, is an ideal vehicle for delivering ads that offer both reach and frequency. Current estimates for mobile subscriptions (reach) are between 4.2 billion and 5 billion. Research has shown that “about 90% of all text messages are read within 3 minutes of their delivery – and over 99% of all text messages are read by the recipient.”
And while you can’t inundate subscribers with repetitive messages, once you’ve received permission to engage with people on their mobiles, there’s an expectation that you will in fact keep in touch with them. Your audience expects you to deliver valuable, relevant content on a regular basis, and of course that content will include and/or reinforce your key messages.
According to Seth, “You can’t market a product in one fell swoop. Instead, it’s an interactive process, an approach that takes time and persistence and continual adjustment.” Permission mobile marketing provides a channel that is ideally suited for keeping the conversation going.
Seth also tells us that people are “most likely to respond to advertising that is frequent, focused, and personal.” That sounds like permission mobile marketing too, doesn’t it?
In Chapter Six, Seth explores different levels of permission and how marketers can move consumers up the permission ladder.