Why frequency is the key to marketing success

Why frequency is the key to marketing success

The biggest threat to anyone and every company isn’t bad or average talent, products or services. The biggest threat is obscurity. When people don’t know about you, it doesn’t matter how good your talent, products or services are. Kinda make sense, doesn’t it? Let’s explore further…

Brand recognition for marketing success

I’m sure you’re familiar with many average, or sub average products and services. You know they are average but for some reason they are known to you, some even engraved in your mind, and you’ll even end up buying from them. McDonalds is probably the most common example, and that’s because a lot of people I know would agree that the food in those “family restaurants” isn’t of the best taste or quality. Some of course, will disagree with my previous statement, and that’s ok.

We buy products or service which are ubiquitous, and whose brand is familiar, rather than look for the exquisite, the fantastic, the uber quality.

Advertising sales people have talked about TOMA (top of mind awareness) for many years. Sociologist Niklas Luhmann stated that, “familiarity is a pre-condition of trust”. The more familiar a person is with a brand, the more likely they are to make a purchase from that brand. This holds true to people, products and services too. Think of politicians, actors, or any other famous people. The concept of fame, is the pre-cursor of trust, and the foundation on which trust is built upon.

Taking this concept to the extreme, we can look at Donald Trump and his early success in polls. He’s did everything seemingly wrong, yet he’s famous, and therefore was trusted by millions of Americans against much better and more qualified politicians.

The rule of seven

One of the oldest concepts in marketing is the Rule of Seven:

A prospective buyer should hear or see the marketing message at least seven times before they buy it from you.

The number 7 is preceded by the two word, “at least”!

There have been many studies which show that people learn by repetition, a concept well documented and applied on many aspects of our lives, from repeat jokes or words in a comedy show, to our entire schooling system. Aristotle is quoted as saying:

We are what we repeatedly do.

Repetition helps us master skills (sports, games, playing music, etc.) and has a major effect on the way we learn, and apply our learning.

We need to apply the same principal to our marketing activities — the more messages per time period are out there, the easier it is for people to register our existence, evoke trust, and lead to marketing success and a sale.


To implement the rule of seven for marketing success, consider the following:

1. Use integrated marketing tactics

Use above the line and below the line activities, keeping in mind “users’ seamless experience”. Use consistent messaging across online/offline campaigns, and encourage users/consumers to move from online to offline, and vice versa.

2. Leverage multiple online channels

Our friends at Firebrand/Aquent/Vitamin T are doing this really well. They are managing all available online channels, and sharing (only relevant!) content between the brand’s channels (Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and even G+).

3. Repurpose existing content

Consider this. One talk, recorded on video, should be shared as a YouTube video, which can be repurposed as a blog as a transcript, using the slides on SlideShare, quoting favourite nuggets on Twitter, and posting all of those multiple times with slight editorial changes on Facebook, Linkedin, G+ and Medium. That’s one piece of content, utilised to the max!

4. Be everywhere, all the time.

Say Facebook is your favourite channel because it brings the most engagement per post. That’s great, but not enough. The more channels you use, the better your message be engraved in people’s minds. Be on TV, Radio, Newspapers (!), emails, social media, Billboards, Interviews, advertorials  — be everywhere, all the time (but only if that’s where your audience is). Use automation to your advantage (Tools like Buffer or Hootsuite allow scheduling of content multiple times, to multiple channels.).

It’s never been so easy and cheap to be everywhere all the time.  And there’s no better time to start, than now!



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