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Want to be a better digital marketer? Stop marketing so hard

If you come from a traditional marketing background (or no marketing background at all), it may seem logical that the more you push your brand message out in front of your customer, the more business you’ll generate. Makes sense, right? More impressions means more opportunity for a transaction. But there’s one fundamental problem with that model: People don’t want to be marketed to.

So at what point do marketing messages cease to work in your favor and actually start to work against you? When does the customer say “enough advertising”? How do you engage a person who already fast-forwards through your TV commercials on their DVR and listens to their ad-free upgrade of Pandora instead of the radio?


Give your customer valuable content that they want to read, watch, download and share. And give it to them for free. If your customer already wants something you have to offer, you don’t have to push it at them so hard. They’re already engaged.

I’m going to illustrate this with an example from my own experience.

Campaign Monitor is a company that offers email marketing software for companies like us (Gorilla 76) to use for our clients’ email campaigns. In short, they allow us to design, write, send and measure customized emails. Probably not the most exciting thing to the average person. But guess what? I’m smack in the middle of their target audience. So how did they reel me in and keep me? They gave me (and continue to give me) really valuable stuff for free.

As a designer, I’m always looking for design inspiration. Do a Google search for “email template inspiration” and you get this:

Search results for "email template inspiration"


How did they get there in the Google rankings? They have continuously built what has become a massive gallery of other designers’ work – a great resource for me. Google recognizes this and grants them credibility in their search results.

Before long I recognized the value and subscribed to their own free e-newsletter. Now I get messages like the below from them every few weeks that I chose to receive. I’ve literally asked them to market to me. See how that works?


Campaign Monitor email blast


And now that they’ve got me hooked on their product, they give me a huge library (see below) of additional resources that help me to continue using their product as efficiently as possible to deliver great results for my clients. They’ve thrown me into a repeating sales cycle that I actually want to be in, and I’m happy to admit it! Furthermore, I’m sitting here writing an unsolicited blog post that promotes them.


Campaign Monitor website resources


It’s a powerful thing when you not only have a great product, but your customer seeks you out to get it.

So in conclusion, maybe you don’t have to market so hard after all. Think about what tools, resources, videos, tutorials or articles might be both valuable to your customer and relevant to what your company offers. Then get them out there.

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Email or call Ashley Hamilton at (314) 260-7455 with any questions you might have. We’re here to help.