Reach vs. Right: A Seth Godin-Inspired Thought

By Allie Hartzog Jul 11, 2019

As kids, we reached for the cookies on the tall countertop and climbed the highest branches of a tree to get to the top. “Reach” was about the highest, farthest, greatest amount of distance we could go. Professionally, as adults, we still see “reach” in a similar way, but should we? If we are reaching thousands and thousands, up to millions of people… is that really the best way to grow our business? Some may think so, but marketing genius Seth Godin encourages us to think differently about reach in this recent blog post.


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So, is your goal to reach more people or the right people?

Let’s say you own a small business. In a perfect world, you’d have unlimited ad dollars to spend, so why not reach big and shell out the cash for a Super Bowl commercial, even if your target market is less than 1% of those who will tune in for the big game?

Incoming: the pin to pop this dream-world bubble.

The reality is, budgets exist for a good reason, and there needs to be a limit, a maximum, for a truly valuable spend. Your best bet when it comes to reaching your ideal customer is to target them in the most direct way possible. We all have our “ideal audience” in mind – based on age, gender, lifestyle, etc. – so why bother with marketing opportunities that aren’t actually the right fit?

And even when you find the right opportunity to reach your customers, how do you grab and keep their attention when they’re constantly inundated with ads? Lucky for you, we have the suggestion.

Catch their eye while they’re willingly (and excitedly) reading stories shared by the very people they want to know more about. Better yet, catch their eye month after month through a magazine they’re proud to keep on their coffee table, one they don’t even pay to receive. Better still, catch their eye by being seen not simply as an advertiser, but as a community supporter who enables this cherished resource to exist because of your partnership.

Forget a wide “reach” – landing in the hands of just one quality potential customer is worth more of your time and money than casting a wide net where your advertising efforts may (and likely will) fall on deaf ears.

The right people are waiting to hear from you. We can help with that!


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