How To Define Propinquity Points

How To Define Propinquity Marketing Points

The first step in developing a Propinquity Marketing Strategy is defining your key Propinquity Points.  The technique varies by category, industry and prospect but here is a repeatable four-step process that can serve as your starting point.

It’s the same process I use with my clients and we find it to be an excellent jumping off point. As you work through this process, you may find certain steps more or less effective. That’s fine and expected. Feel free to skip over steps that don’t generate good results for you and spend more time with the ones that do. Chances are you’ll even discover a few new tactics or processes that help you discover key Propinquity Points for your industry.

Step One: Social Listening

Use Social Listening tools to find the keywords your prospects are using to discuss your product or service and to define the platforms on which these conversations are occurring. Then use web analytics platforms like Compete and Google Ads to develop a sense for platform traffic. By cross referencing traffic and keyword instance, you can discover which websites, blogs and platforms contain the most target rich environment.

Step Two: Geographic Social Listening

If your prospects and customers gather in known geographic places like festivals, trade shows or sporting arenas, use geographic social listening tools to cast a listening web over the area during events. This isn’t perfect, it won’t capture all the social signal coming emanating from those locations, but it will help you identify potential prospects and, if they’re sharing links in their messaging, favored blogs, websites, etc.

Step Three: Using Primary Research

You’d be surprised what people will tell you if you just ask. While professional researchers almost always do a better job than you could using a DIY platform, the cost of such research isn’t usually justifiable at this point in your Propinquity Marketing program development. Instead, use DIY platforms like SurveyMonkey.com to craft and field simple surveys that you can send to your customers and prospects. Then ask them where they are turning to for information, what their must read news outlets are, etc.

Step Four: Classify Your Propinquity Points

Next you’ll need to classify each Propinquity Point as either an outposts or an embassy. In the simplest terms an outpost is a place where you and your content will show up from time to time and where your prospects congregate. A good example is a guest post on a popular blog or authoring an article for a magazine.

Embassies on the other hand are Propinquity Points where you elect to create a more continuous presence. Like outposts, these are Propinquity Points where your prospective customers congregate. However, based on your research you feel that a focused effort and regular ongoing participation in conversations occurring at these Propinquity Points will result in increased business opportunities. Embassies might include platforms like LinkedIn or Twitter, where you’ll spend time your building and cultivating a community of prospects.

The Power of Propinquity

Propinquity Marketing,  properly leveraged, results in increased brand exposure frequency in a condensed time period resulting in prospects moving through the Propinquity Continuum (aware of me >> know me >> like me >> do business with me) more rapidly.

Contact me to learn more about developing a Propinquity Strategy, or buy my new book, The Invisible Sale, where I devote two entire chapters to a discussion of Propinquity and using Propinquity to create a Painless Prospecting platform.

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About Tom Martin

Tom is 20+ year veteran of the marketing and advertising industry with a penchant for stiff drinks, good debates and digital gadgets that helps digitally challenged companies create innovative and effective digital marketing strategies. He is the founder of Converse Digital , author of The Invisible Sale and a contributing writer for Advertising Age. Tom guides clients through the digital marketing maze and helps companies teach their sales force how to Painlessly Prospect their way to more sales. Connect with him on Google+ or follow him on Twitter or connect with him on LinkedIn.


  1. […] Tom’s painless prospecting philosophy is that you don’t walk away from SEO, but do get off your own blog. You need to think and care more about putting great content on other people’s blogs. Tom advises you to treat every blog as your own. When you put content in these places, they are called Propinquity Points. […]

  2. […] You need to think and care more about putting great content on other people’s blogs. Tom advises you to treat every blog as your own. When you put content in these places, they are called Propinquity Points. […]

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