Old School Marketing Is Dying. Some People Won’t Admit It Yet…

After reading and debating in a thread at Net Marketing Forum about demographics and the ‘old school way’ of marketing to people, I thought for sure I wasn’t going to get into it anymore. You see, I will never convince people that the old school way of marketing to the masses is dying…Why? There is comfort in familiarity.

People hate change. They don’t and won’t embrace it until they have no other choice. Here’s what is changing and why I think the old school way of marketing is dying.

A few years ago, all you needed was a survey of about 100 people. Ask them questions like how old they are, how much money they spend on certain things, what their sex was, average household income…You know, stuff that made everyone an ‘average’.

Then along came Mr. Marketing and created products and services, geared towards ‘the average’.

People usually just embraced whatever the average was and you had empires built on catering to the ‘masses’ or ‘the average’.

Then along came this thing called the internet and in the past few years everything has changed. In Chris Anderson’s masterpiece ‘The Long Tail’, he explains that the real opportunities in life are the ones that the ‘masses’ aren’t looking at. It’s the smaller niches. The group of people that don’t like what everyone else does and that’s where I REALLY get excited about the future of marketing.

I’d rather cater my business to people who think like me. No marketing survey on earth will tell me this, the only way I can ‘cater’ to this group is to roll up my sleeves and interact with them. How do we do this in this day and age? Simple, Twitter, facebook, LinkedIn, Sweeva, forums, blogs, and every aspect of the social media world we can use.

The power is found in the people during this time of social revolution and while companies will hide behind ‘marketing demographics’ for as long as they can, savvy marketers are seeing the change. They are embracing the need to be visible, to ENGAGE and interact with others. This is where the future is, it’s not in the numbers, it’s in the people.

I’m sure many people will debate this and tell me that old school marketing is not dying. And hey, like I said in the forum, whatever works for you, works for you. But I encourage interested people, roll up your sleeves and get to ‘know’ your fellow entrepreneurs. There is a lot that is about to happen in this social world…Key word here is…Social.

Jon Olson

I'm Jon Olson, I've been publishing Hit Exchange News since 2003 and been involved in the traffic exchange industry since...Well, the beginning :) I'd love to network with you as you browse the pulse of the traffic exchange industry! I am also a HUGE fan of reading your comments. I will respond to every single one! Poke around and enjoy the 'News! And thanks for hanging out...

18 thoughts to “Old School Marketing Is Dying. Some People Won’t Admit It Yet…”

  1. Jon, Jon, Jon!

    As always, you are ‘leading the charge’ AND up to your neck in controversy.

    I’ll be watching the comments fly, my friend… lol

    My two cents?

    There will always be those folks who resist change, and for many self-justified reasons.

    However, those folks who do resist change, will still be bragging about their massive VHS collection…

    after their VCR shoots craps!

  2. Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha I’m telling you, it’s all about Betamax and 8-tracks man LOL

    Yeah, hey I know it’s going to be a lost cause to try to ‘convince’ people that these old ways are dying but alas, you know I always like to debate about it.

    Reminds me of the music industry….They fought ‘change’ and now record companies are losing millions a year.

    It is what it is…

  3. I don’t think its dead in fact I used it at the moment to make sales in clickbank and profit from it each day. I think they both exist, those that need the comfort zone in order to buy from someone and then there are the casual readers that click on banners like what they see and end up ordering.

    There is no middle man needed there to get to know and trust which is what us affiliate marketers are. We are the middle man pushing the product just like stores push products to their customers.

    Dead? No, 2 ways of marketing yes!

  4. Of course, you have a good point, Sean.

    There will always be marketers, who recognize a shrinking niche, and make it their own.

    Make sales to those snails, as well as the rabbits!

    I should probably be sitting on a warehouse full of VCRs…

    DAMN IT!

  5. Change is inevitable. Those that embrace it are the ones that succeed. Always been that way… always will be that way.

    Don’t waste your time Jon trying to convince those that don’t make the effort to understand. That is only keeping you from engaging with those that do understand.

    I would also suggest to your readers that understand the concept of change, to broaden their horizons. To engage with others outside of our industry. The internet is a huge place, and there are many outside of the traffic exchange and advertising realm that are just waiting for people like you and I to engage with them. It is those relationships that will truly allow us to grow as individuals, and as business owners.


  6. Sean – I guess. I’m just not thinking like an affiliate marketer anymore. I’m trying to just hang out and talk these days LOL scary

    DA – Bang on man, exactly my thoughts.

    Carl – Bro, you should start a comedy blog. LOLOL

  7. Hi Jon

    Glad my post at NMF and subsequent debate has inspired you to blog about the topic.

    Anyway if I’m paying money for my advertising I want to know it’s going to the correct demographic. It’s the same thing as you teach people to advertise splash pages on TE’s rather than generic affiliate links.

    Used properly market research and targeting will save you money over the scatter gun approach used by the big companies with millions to spend on brand awareness.


  8. Andrew – Oh yeah man, it’s been a good debate.

    I still stick with my opinion though, ‘averages’ aren’t what I’m after. I’m after the social side of it that doesn’t have an ROI attached to it.

  9. Oh Jon.. you and everyone else already know my opinion from this from NMF.. “Old school marketing” is not dead and it won’t be any time soon.. yes engagement is important, but it’s only one piece of a larger puzzle..

    When you are the owner of a TE and involved in this world for ever 10 years, sure, you can throw demos out the window, you have a large enough circle of influence that all you have to do is engage and nothing else, but for the rest of the world there is so much more to it than that.. if you are NOT using demographics you are wasting a lot of time and energy with untargetted ads..

    maybe some people like you don’t need to worry about targeting or pulling in new people from outside TE land, but the rest of us are using every resource available to broaden our scope, and we are using DEMOGRAPHICS to get the most out of our advertising dollars and to CREATE ENGAGING CONTENT FOR OUR TARGET AUDIENCE!

    Even if you are going to argue the importance of engagement, which I totally agree with, you still need to know WHO you are engaging so you can take an informed approach..

  10. I personally am “old school” (at my age, you’ve got to be)!!
    but I have joined the younger generation as a member of Sokule,
    Facebook, Twitter etc. etc. because I can see the advantage of social marketing.
    I believe there’s room for both, they are just two sides of the same coin.
    I’m a firm believer in the old maxim:-
    If it works, USE IT
    If it don’t, DROP IT
    Keith Darby

  11. Hi Jon,

    I don’t have years of experience in IM. Barely one year, with only the last 3 months being active.

    The “building relationships” idea wasn’t one I embraced at first. But now, I’m convinced it is essential to build trust and credibility.

    On some sites, many people just throw links at you right after you’ve sent them a contact request. These places are called spam farms. All the owners care about is that you post “Hi” 300 times a day and they reward you with points.

    When I get a link thrown at me in a PM, I am now responding that it is spam, please don’t do it again, try to build a relationship with me instead.

    Some people don’t like it at all. They probably say it’s rude.

    Why would I want to do business with such people ?

    Building relationships takes more than 24 hours. So be it. I’m in for the long run, so I prefer to give good content, answer questions sent to me, and create short screencast videos to show features to someone.

    I guess I’m doing things right, I got 10 testimonials at my favorite IM social site. That in 4 weeks.

    It’s late as I write this, 11h55 PM. Sorry if my point doesn’t come across easily.

    I like your blog, Jon.

    Philippe Moisan

  12. John – Some people like me, might not be as big of an influence as you may think. Some people like me still dig in the trenches after 10 years and continue to network and grow my brand. But again, do whatever works for you. I know this works for me, I’m going to do it to my full potential.

    Keith – Amen to that. Never too young or too old to try this new stuff out =)

    Sheila / Yorke – Thanks for the comments. I really appreciate them =)

    Philippe – Thank you sir. Very much appreciate the feedback and input!

  13. WOW Jon! Leave it you to throw something controversial into your blog. lol Let me throw another at you. Old school marketing for me is Mom and Pop stores, door to door salesmen and traveling salesmen. These methods have been around much longer than internet marketing and are what sprang to my mind when I read your title for this blog. I got social with my marketing at the first opportunity that I found (a chat on a small TE). I took your advice to brand myself also and still use TEs and other advertising methods as well, but social advertising is what I like best (it also gets me the best results). Maybe its just me, but I love being social with my advertising. It has gained me referrals, friends and sales as well as a small but faithful group of followers. So is old school advertising dying? Probably not LOL But what a way to go!

  14. Sally you know what’s funny…

    Yesterday I mentioned that too. That would be really old school but yes, that stuff is just manifested these days in social media.

    Face to face, real relationships =)

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