May 12, 2015

The Value Exchange applied to Interruption Marketing.

Interruption marketing is anathema to me. I find watching television a thoroughly annoying experience - and the rare shows I MUST see (MasterChef anyone?) see me white knuckling it through the ads. The TV volume goes up by 30 decibels, advertisers yelling at viewers about some product or service, coaxing us to buy into their solution to a problem we didn't know we had.

It's interruption marketing in its most base form. Its goal - thus the volume increase - is to shake you from your TV coma and force you to pay attention. It is, in my opinion, a very archaic and ill effective means of communicating. And if Channel Ten's recent license 260 million license write down is an indicator, I’m not the only person who thinks this advertising channel is not sustainable.

Banner ads, display ads, take overs - these are digital equivalents of the TVC. The difference is that we can more effectively ignore these intrusions. At the very least, they are mild distractions, and despite trillions of banner ads being served annually in the United States alone, statistically a user is more likely to survive a plane crash than to click a banner ad.

Author, marketer and philosopher Seth Godin published a great book that details an even greater idea. That idea is Permission Marketing of which he wrote,   

“Permission marketing is the privilege (not the right) of delivering anticipated, personal and relevant messages to people who actually want to get them. It recognizes the new power of the best consumers to ignore marketing. It realizes that treating people with respect is the best way to earn their attention.”

In a recent interview conducted by Social Media Examiner, Copy Hackers’ Joanna Wiebe offered what I think is an excellent insight into a website function that appears to interrupt users, but offers what she describes as a Call To Value, or in Godin-speak, permission marketing. This is an excellent concept and Wiebe shared a great anecdote about users visiting websites looking for call to action buttons to click - as though that was the purpose of their visit and the motivation behind their online activity. When distilled down like this, it seems quite an absurd premise. The idea of a Call to Value however makes a lot of sense. We engage in constant dialogue about the value exchange - a user provides their information to a website with a view to getting something back - discounts, offers, information, but we may not give as much thought to adding value at an interruption point.

So we decided to take up challenge and try it ourselves and chances are, if you’re reading this on the bwired site, you’ve probably already seen our new pop up modal window that demonstrates what I am talking about. We’re asking that you sign up for our monthly newsletter and in exchange, providing you with our Free Website Overhaul Guide.

I won’t derail this thread with all the advantages of a communication such as this, but what I will say is that where you’re able to offer your site visitors something practical or valuable, they are inclined to share their credentials with you and (hopefully) benefit from your ongoing emarketing initiatives. If you’re really doing it right, you’ll give those new subscribers an opportunity to opt out of ongoing engagement in the offer email - however, if the Call to Value is right, they’ll have no desire to.

About the blogger.
Jason Healey is bwired’s Head of Delivery. A passionate digital strategist, Jason loves mining data in Google Analytics and promoting approaches to problem solving aimed at improving your digital ecosystem. Read other posts by Jason about Strategy, Google Analytics and Digital Marketing.

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