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The similarities between the push/pull promotional strategies are that:
1. They both involve advertising and product development
2. The end result (hopefully) for both is that they both strive to sell as many products to the consumer as possible.
The differences are:
1. Push strategy takes an already existing product and pushes it onto the consumer through many different advertising and marketing approaches. An example of this is perfume samples (scented blots on cardboard) that are shoved in magazines. This is pushing an existing product directly onto the consumer. This occurs when production is high and demand is consistent.
2. Pull strategy takes aim at consumers that are ready and waiting for a product to be produced. I recall the Cabbage Patch Kid craze of the mid 1980's. Everyone wanted that doll, and the company that produced them didn't have to do much in the way of advertising because the product was snatched off the shelf as soon as it became available. When demand is high for a product, or production is limited. Manufacturers can use this approach and fill specific orders.
Let me know if you have any further questions and good luck!
A distribution channel is the chain that a product goes through from production to consumer. Most manufacturers do not sell directly to the consumer, the product usually goes first to a distributor, then to the retailer (store) then the consumer.
Think of purchasing airline tickets on a site like travelocity. Travelocity is the distributor, selling the product from the company (the airline), kind of making them the "middleman" in the sale of the product or service. This is an example of the product going through the distribution channel.
Geographical location affects selection greatly. If a product is made at a factory in Mexico and, of course the end result is to get the product into the hands of the paying customer, then distributors will be carefully selected most likely near the border in Texas. This cuts down on shipping and makes more financial sense to choose a distributor that is nearest the product. It is then the job of the distributor to get the product to a retailer and then to the customer.
Hope this helps, let me know if you have any more questions.