Interruption vs. Inbound Marketing

By Melissa Neilson
Oct 04,2016
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What is interruption marketing?

It is outbound marketing which is the form of marketing that we all know. For example, we know this type of marketing as flyers in the mail or telemarketing calls. This type of marketing asks the audience to stop what they are doing and pay attention to the message that somebody is trying to put out to them – or in other words, interrupting them.

Some other examples of interruption marketing are:

  • Sales calls or cold calls
  • Radio advertisements
  • Print advertising
  • Direct mail, coupons, or flyers
  • Email spam or junk mail
  • TV advertisements or commercials

What is inbound marketing?

In contrast to the traditional form, inbound marketing provides value to the target audience while moving them through the stages of the sales funnel. Instead of asking the person to stop and listen to your marketing message, you are providing them with promotions that keep them informed and in touch with your brand as well as topics that your brand relates to.

Some examples include:

  • Blogs or articles
  • eBooks
  • Newsletters or Email lists
  • Social Media Channels
  • Podcasts or live streams

There are considered to be five levels of moving a potential customer through the sales funnel:


Situational permission – potential customers provide their personal information. For example, joining somebody’s mailing list to access their content or following the brand on social media.

Brand trust – the audience member does not cut ties with the brand and instead continues to let the brand provide them with the value that they first received. For example, they continue to follow the blog or the social media channels.

Personal relationship – the audience member has a preexisting relationship or personal tie to the brand.

Points permission – the idea that one trades permission to the brand for an incentive to be earned back, such as the opportunity to win a prize or to earn loyalty points.

Intravenous permission – when the customer becomes completely dependent on the brand.


Which one is more superior?

When you are sending an outbound marketing message, it is interrupting the flow of your potential client or customer’s daily life. When you are sending an inbound marketing message, you are drawing in the potential client or customer by providing them with value then asking their permission by inviting them into the marketing message. An inbound marketing message is one where you are drawing in the potential customer to come to you, rather than going to them. There are many messages out in the world today. Thanks to social media and the World Wide Web, your target audience is inundated with a slew of marketing messages from many different angles. Why would they want to stop for yours if they know it’s just a basic sale? In a world where commercials can be fast-forwarded and accounts can be unfollowed, it is important to stand out from the sea of sales and create a conversation and a perceived value on your own.  The value will convert into brand trust and commitment, and further down the line... sales!


More effect, less cost

Outbound marketing simply receives more of an effect, with less of a cost. It creates truly committed customers and clients without an advertising budget. Advertising budgets in interruption marketing can become quite large – between the costs for commercials and printers, etc. it can get overwhelming. Sometimes the return on investment doesn’t’ even cover the cost. However, with inbound marketing techniques, it costs much less to run social media and write blogs about the topic that your brand niche is in. This kind of genuine marketing might take more time, but in the end it is more cost effective and creates more conversions.


Last modified on Oct 04,2016
Published in Blogs

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