What Is Push And Pull Marketing

What Is Push & Pull Marketing?

Table of contents

    Estimated reading time: 8 minutes

    The term may not be one you’ve heard too much about, but push and pull marketing is an action plan that should be at the heart of every good online – and offline – marketing strategy. While it’s common for businesses to use push or pull marketing, or even a mixture of both, to get the best results from any organic, paid marketing or conversion rate optimisation strategy, it’s essential to know where to focus your efforts.

    But what is push and pull marketing? In this article, we’ll explore what push and pull marketing is, what the differences between the two really are, and which one is best for you and your business.

    What Is Push And Pull Marketing?

    Push and pull marketing is a descriptive name for what each of these two different strategies does. ‘Push’ marketing focuses on ‘pushing’ your brand, product, or service out in front of audiences that include existing and potential new customers and the wider audience. ‘Pull’ marketing centres around creating specific marketing strategies to generate interest or curiosity in your brand, product, or service that ‘pull’ customers in.

    This is a fairly general definition of what push and pull marketing is, but it’s important to remember that both strategies can be used for both online and offline marketing. So let’s get a little deeper into each of them to understand the bigger differences, what they can do, and when to use each one to help your marketing strategy.

    What Is Push Marketing?

    Push marketing is a promotional strategy that focuses on ‘pushing’ your brand, products, or services to get in front of either a specific or a general audience. The ultimate goal is to get your message across effectively, telling customers what you do or offer and how you can help them, to persuade them into buying.

    When Is Push Marketing Useful?

    This type of persuasive marketing strategy is commonly used by companies who really want to push a new product and is common in offline marketing. It’s a great way to get your name out there to promote yourself or your products, create a buzz, or build your reputation. 

    But it’s also an essential marketing strategy in online promotion too. A popular and common method of push marketing is through email marketing and paid media advertising which can include social media ads, pay-per-click (PPC) ads, and Google display ads. 

    What Is Pull Marketing?

    Pull marketing focuses on drawing new or existing customers in with helpful, useful, or engaging content – hopefully of all three – if they’re looking for more in-depth information to help them make an informed decision about buying. But it’s perhaps a longer-term strategy which will aim to get your business recognised as the one to use to create long-term, loyal customers.

    When Is Pull Marketing Useful?

    If you’re a more experienced or established business, pull marketing can be beneficial to your online marketing strategy. With a considered and strategic approach to informative social media, blog articles, or videos, you allow customers to move one step closer to buying from you. 

    Many new or existing customers will want to find more detailed information, but they’re not interested in being sold to – this is especially true if they’re looking to make a bigger financial investment. In many cases, they’ll use Google to help them find the information they need, so a long-term SEO strategy will help you and long-form blogs, or detailed social posts, will get you more coverage.

    What’s The Difference Between Push And Pull Marketing?

    While closely linked together, there aren’t many differences between push and pull marketing, but there are a few subtle, and important, ones. 

    Push Marketing

    • Aimed at promoting or ‘pushing’ your brand, product, or service to a wide audience
    • Useful and effective for short-term goals, seductive promotion, and fast sales

    Pull Marketing

    • About drawing customers in by providing deeper, more compelling information
    • Useful and effective as part of a long-term marketing strategy

    What Are The Tactics Used In Push And Pull Marketing?

    Any business can deploy either push or pull marketing tactics to achieve its end goals – or, over time, even both. But let’s look at some of the tactics you can use to your advantage in different scenarios.

    Push Marketing Tactics

    Push marketing tactics involve creating short-term buzz and customer demand for your product or service by putting it front and centre in their mind. You can use these online and offline promotional tactics to do it effectively:

    • Social media or display ads
    • Pay-per-click ads
    • Trade shows or exhibitions
    • Point-of-sale materials
    • Billboards, TV, or print advertising

    Pull Marketing Tactics

    Pull marketing tactics rely on long-term strategies to pull the customer into your way of thinking, to motivate and persuade them into buying. You can use these online tactics to do it effectively:

    • Social media or display ads
    • Pay-per-click ads
    • Online blog posts or articles
    • Social viral/word of mouth marketing
    • Expert guide videos
    • Email marketing

    Whether you use push or pull marketing tactics to serve your marketing purposes, it’s worth noting that using both will ensure a good strategy right from the start before setting you up for the long term.

    What Is A Push Notification?

    Push notifications are another form of push marketing appearing as you use your web browser or an app. Their purpose is to literally push notifications, messages, or offers to users from a particular company or app to drive engagement and potentially add more value.

    However, users can enable or disable ‘web-push’ notifications on their browsers or ‘in-app’ push notifications on their devices. By enabling them, push notifications can be sent to them any time they’re online or using the app, but by disabling them, the user won’t see any notifications. So while push notifications might be a little hit and miss, they can still be an important push marketing tactic.

    The Importance Of Push Notifications

    While it’s not guaranteed whether users will enable their push notifications or not, it’s still worth adding them to your push marketing strategy as, when they’re enabled, they can:

    • Attract attention to your brand or product
    • Increase engagement
    • Drive traffic to your website
    • Increase your conversion rate
    • Give users a better experience

    Combining Push And Pull Marketing

    As we’ve mentioned a couple of times, push and pull marketing can be put in place by using either push strategies or pull strategies. But it can, and probably should include both, as multi-channel marketing, depending on where you are in your overall marketing strategy. 

    For example, a new start-up company can’t rely on the long-term strategies of pull marketing to build its customer base from scratch. Likewise, an established business might not want to use short-term push marketing tactics, preferring instead to provide more meaningful content to already loyal customers. 

    Both push and pull marketing will have pros and cons for companies at different stages of their business lives and marketing strategies. But using a combination of both push and pull marketing tactics can be used in a successful campaign for both types of business without relying heavily on one or the other.

    Examples Of Push Marketing

    We’ve already alluded to some key examples of push marketing, but here are a few examples of how they can work to create a buzz, build awareness, and have a real-world impact on your brand’s sales funnel.

    Online Display Ads

    There are plenty of types of paid display ads to get your message across both online and in-app platforms. Online display ads can include interactive or static banner ads, responsive ads, or retargeting ads. And display ads on social media can use demographics for targeting while being liked and shared for a wider reach.


    Out of home advertising including digital posters and traditional print billboard ads in high-traffic areas can get thousands of eyes on them every single day in multiple nationwide locations. This helps you to create maximum brand, product, or service awareness for a pre-determined period.

    Direct Marketing

    Direct marketing – whether through a leaflet or flyer mailing or handout campaign or even free samples given out at trade shows, exhibitions, or shopping malls – and direct advertising in relevant publications can have a direct and instant impact on sales.

    Examples Of Pull Marketing

    Pull marketing has a less immediate effect and instead concentrates on longer-term, more strategic techniques. But though less impactful in the short-term, pull marketing done well can provide more subtle, long-term reach for your target market.


    A great SEO strategy can give you all the information you need to include the right keywords, phrases, and search terms on your website that people are actually using. Done well and over time your website and any relevant pages can be seen in organic search results. SEO can take time to work, but it’s certainly an essential strategy to include.


    By optimising your blogs using the relevant keywords, phrases, and search terms as part of your SEO strategy, regular blogging lets you share helpful and informative content to your audience. Optimised blogs will also appear organically in search engine results so you increase the number of people who see them, helping to cement your reputation as an authority in your sector.

    Social Media

    Not to be confused with an instant, push social media campaign, a slow, pull social media campaign allows you to share how-to videos, images and updates from your business, new product launches, or even influencer content, all working to give customers more meaningful and valuable content.

    Push And Pull Marketing With Improve Position

    Push and pull marketing can combine the best of inbound and outbound marketing strategies, but the key to a successful campaign is knowing how to use each – or both – to engage your audience and customers. 
    As a results-driven SEO agency, Improve Position can help you understand which will be best for your business and help you put the right strategy in place for you. For more information on getting started, contact us today for your free, 30-minute SEO consultation.

    About the author

    Michael is the founder and managing director of Improve Position with a strong background in both web development and technical SEO. His enthusiasm shines through with his passion to help others understand and succeed in the world of online business marketing.

    Latest posts

    Blog categories

    Blog tags

    Like What You See? Then Why Not Give Us A Share:

    Leave a Comment

    Subscribe To Our Newsletter

    to receive FREE marketing hints & tips every month. We never spam and won't pass your details out to any third parties. Unsubscribe at any time. View our privacy policy.