If we got a fiver for every time we heard “we tried marketing and it didn’t work” from prospects, we would all be driving around in Porsches. If we’d had another fiver each time we probed and found out that this turned out to be one email shot to an iffy list, then we would have retired in the sun long ago!
Marketing messages need repeating, but the million dollar question is how often. There is no right way to calculate effective frequency. Depending on whose papers you read, it could be anywhere between 7 and 30 exposures to a marketing message before any sort of positive response is measured. In marketing circles, developed by the advertising industry in the 1930’s, there is a “Rule of 7”. This rule states that a prospect needs to hear the advertiser’s message at least 7 times before they’ll take any forecast action.
More recently, a study from Microsoft concluded between 6 and 20 was best, at least for audio messages.
Thomas Smith, in his book “Successful Advertising,” makes the following reflection on effective frequency:
Thomas Smith wrote his advertising book back in 1885, which goes to show that nothing is really new in marketing!
However, you can conclude from all the research that marketing messages are significantly more effective when repeated, whether its email marketing, PR, advertising or promotion.
Translating this into your marketing strategy, you should be detailing how you will reach each prospect at least 7 times, or you can expect reduced sales success. It also probably true that in today’s clutter of media channels, the figure probably is higher.
So use the same marketing messages throughout your email marketing, advertising, vehicle branding, exhibition displays, printed literature, PR for maximum effect.
A good rule of thumb is that if you are totally bored with your marketing messages, then its probably just breaking through to the target market!
And on top of that, attention span is smaller, meaning that the quality and succinctness of the message needs to be carefully scripted.
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