A new day for online marketing: Beginning your own rebellion

online marketing

By Sally Miller, {grow} Community Member

Early in 2019, I came to an unnerving conclusion. Traditional methods of online marketing were no longer working for me.

I’m sick of automated sales funnels, intrusive advertising, artificial scarcity tactics, copy and paste emails. Upsells. Big promises that don’t live up to expectations.

As a consumer, I was fed up. And as a business owner, I couldn’t keep doing things the old way.

Then I read Mark Schaefer’s book, Marketing Rebellion. I saw a glimmer of hope!

In his book, Mark points to many businesses that are doing things differently. Businesses are moving toward a human-centered approach. They are creating a sense of community and belonging. His case studies triggered something inside me. I was inspired to re-invent my business.

My personal marketing rebellion had begun.

Nobody wants to be controlled

As I contemplated what specific changes to make in my business, I had a second epiphany. I realized (with the help of Mark’s book) that the problem with online marketing comes down to one thing – control.

Or more specifically – who controls the customer’s journey. The mindset of the traditional online marketer is “how do I get people to do x?

How do I get people to subscribe to my email list?

How do I get subscribers to open my emails?

How do I get prospects to buy my thing?

It’s all about getting other people to do things. The marketer wants to control the customer’s journey. No wonder consumers have had enough. Nobody wants to be controlled.

So, I asked myself … what if I flipped this thinking on its head? What if I got out of people’s way and left them make informed decisions on their own?

My online marketing rebellion – first steps

But what does this look like in practice?

I’m still in the midst of changing my approach to online marketing. But here are three action steps I took right away:

  • I stopped annoying my audience. I changed my approach, moved all my free resources into one library, and deleted my automated email funnels. People can now access the library free and whenever they want.

When someone first joins, they decide whether they want to receive emails from me (no more forced opt-in). And they can change their email preferences at any time without losing access to their resources.

  • Next, I started bringing people together through monthly coffee meetings where I connect with my audience face-to-face. This gives people a chance to pick my brain while I learn more about their struggles and how I can help them.

It’s a win-win. These meetings are already fueling further changes in my business.

  • Finally, I made a new commitment to my email subscribers. Here’s my promise:
    • I will only send you emails that I believe are genuinely helpful to you.
    • I will only share products and services that I personally believe in and have used myself.
    • I will not send you lengthy email sales sequences in an attempt to “sell you” on something you do not want or need.
    • You can easily opt out of receiving my emails at any time and still keep access to the resource library.

What does your marketing rebellion look like?

The response from my community has been amazing. Dozens of people have written to thank me for taking a stance. I’m excited for the new direction my business is taking.

Which brings me to you.

What does your marketing rebellion look like? What steps can you take right now to change the way you market your business?

I’m sure of one thing. People are sick of the way online marketing is done. It’s time for marketers to change their thinking and stop trying to control the customer’s journey.

Mark encourages us to take this first step: Stop doing what customers hate. That’s within reach of all of us isn’t it?

Sally Miller is an author and coach. You can find her blog at sallyannmiller.com. Or join her Work-At-Home Resource Library to access 20+ resources to help you start and grow a home business.




All posts

The Marketing Companion Podcast

Why not tune into the world’s most entertaining marketing podcast!

View details

Let's plot a strategy together

Want to solve big marketing problems for a little bit of money? Sign up for an hour of Mark’s time and put your business on the fast-track.

View details

Share via