Ray worked with B-2-B and Consumer clients throughout the world ... including USA, Canada, Mexico, Asia, the South Pacific, Europe, the Middle-East, Central & South America, Africa.

This website is a compilation of Ray's 10 years on the Web.


Power Direct Marketing: The Book

9 Reasons Why You Need to
Repeat Your Message

It is a well-known fact that reach and frequency build awareness, which can lead to interest, which can turn into a sale.

If there is anything marketing has learned from advertising it is reach and frequency. Reaching your marketplace with a specific message and doing it on a repeated basis. Success is NOT a single effort!

The Marketing Federation knows how important repetition is. Lifted from some of their material, here is a list of seven IDEAS on repeating your message:

  1. Repeat for reinforcement or emphasis of a benefit or idea
  2. Repeat to aid in understanding any concept that may be difficult to understand
  3. Repeat if there is a possibility your message will not be seen
  4. Repeat when expanding on a key point
  5. Repeat for feeling
  6. Repeat for credibility
  7. Repeat for dramatic impact

The next thing marketing has learned from advertising is multimedia. Where a number of different disciplines are used to repeat the message.

My favorite example of a multimedia program, where the message was repeated over and over for several months, comes from the Bank of America.

Several years ago they made a major effort to increase their consumer loan base. The program was titled: "We’ve Got the Money."

The Bank used statement stuffers and direct mail to all their customers. They used outdoor posters, bus cards, radio, and television to non-customers. They had an 800 number for prospects to call for information. They made outbound telemarketing calls to follow-up all leads.

A true multimedia effort, meshing the techniques of advertising and direct marketing together for a most effective campaign.

It has been proven that "Repetition Builds Reputation!" Let’s look closely at 9 reasons WHY that is true.

1. Your audience forgets 90% of what they see and hear within two weeks.

Why is this so? Because there are hundreds of messages aimed at us every day. In major cities around the world, the population is exposed to about 570 advertising, public relations, sales promotion, and marketing messages a day. Of which they "see" or "hear" only 80. And they remember about an even dozen—3 of the 12 they recall negatively!

The results are the same in Adelaide, Bangkok, Caracus, Dakar, Edmonton, and Frankfurt . . . all around the globe the same thing happens. Every day. So, there is a strong need for you to repeat your message because of all the sounds in the marketplace. Lots is happening.

2. Your market changes constantly.

My dad worked for the same company for 39 years. 39 years! Is there any chance you will work for the same company for half of 39 years? Not in today’s marketplace.

Your market changes. Because we move, because of better communication and transportation, because we get "bored," because we want new challenges, because we want to dive into new opportunities. And when your market changes you have to chase it. Which means you need to repeat your message.

3. You need to test new ideas on a continuing and ongoing basis. And, retest the old ideas.

In direct marketing you need to test new lists. New offers. New prices. New audiences. New geography. Different media.

Because your marketplace is like an octopus—it moves around a lot—you need to find out how to best reach it. And you need to do it on a continuing and ongoing basis. Ditto for the old ideas you once used, that worked, that you no longer use. Try them again. Test, test, TEST.

4. You need to reach for new business.

Early in my marketing and sales career I lost 2/3 of my business within 60 days. One of my major accounts went bankrupt. And another decided to walk out the door.

Because I had not been searching for new business, it took me over 9 months to get even! Every week since that time I spend a little time reaching for new business. Talking to new people. Looking into new marketplaces. Trying to find where I might do my thing with another audience.

5. You need to talk to your customers on a constant basis.

Part of my time in this business was spent under the wing of Eric J. Smith. The Smith of Smith & Hemmings, a direct marketing agency. Eric taught me many things. One being the importance of staying in close and constant touch with your customers.

Eric used to say: "Make love to your customers." Be their teddy bear. Their security blanket. Hold their hand. Let them know you care.

Part of finding new business is talking to your current customers. Because they are probably your best source for additional new business. Keep your audience informed at all times about what you’re up to.

Most of us don’t talk to our customers nearly as often as we should. We’re afraid we may bother them. My recommendation is you bother them a little bit more! You’ll probably get a little more business.

How often is too often? I don’t know. But I do know a mail order company in the United States that has sent a direct mail package to a selection of their total marketplace 81 times in a single year!

Is that too much? Not for those people. This company isn’t mailing in order to keep the paper mills in business—they’re doing it in order to be profitable. And, they are. Talk to your customers more often.

6. You must constantly promote your offer.

There is no reason for you to think I remember what your offer is. Or who you are to make it to me. Or why I should respond to it.

McGraw–Hill Research provides this graph, which shows how a full-page ad run in a business publication 13 times in 16 months continues to pull leads month after month. Five times throughout the campaign, the repeated insertions generated more inquiries than the initial ad.

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You need to promote your offer on a continuing and ongoing basis. Using multimedia as necessary. Using a combination of mail, press, telephone, broadcast, trade shows, take-ones, and other disciplines and marketing tools to let your audience know what your offer is. Make it easy for your prospect to contact you. Let them know why they can benefit by doing business with you. Make your offer desirable.

7. You need to ASK FOR THE ORDER.

McGraw–Hill has done a study in which they found that it takes an average of 7 times for a one-on-one sales representative to ask for the order before they get it.

The Sales & Marketing Executives International has done a study. Their research indicates that 81% of all sales made are made on the fifth call or later in the sales process.

What this indicates is that you need to ask for the order over and over again. You need to repeat your offer, repeat the benefits, repeat the request for action . . . and ask your prospect and customer to give you some additional business. A.F.T.O.—Ask For The Order!

8. You need continuity in the marketplace.

You need to be in the marketplace on a regular, continuing, and ongoing basis. Not necessarily the same amount every week or every month, but on a regular basis. Whatever makes the most sense—not just in and out at your convenience.

You are more likely to be remembered when it’s time to buy if you are frequently seen. Seen through the press, at a trade show, through a piece of direct mail. Even on radio or television if that is appropriate for your marketplace.

Yes, there are seasons. And sometimes a product can only be sold during a certain season. Valentine’s Day products are sold in early February. St. Patrick’s Day products during the middle of March. Around the world.

But, for most products and services the seasons vary little. The range between the best and worst season is rarely more than 20%. This does not mean you shouldn’t be aware of it. It does mean you need to be in the marketplace on a continuing basis.

9. You need continuity of sales efforts.

No matter how you sell—by a captive sales force, by a telemarketing unit, by a distribution network of some type, through a retail store, or through a combination of methods—you need to have your sales force selling on a continuing basis.

If you repeat your message to your marketplace on a regular, continuing, and ongoing basis, your sales efforts will reflect that effort. The sales team will find it easier to close sales because your presence in the marketplace is more active. Continuity in the marketplace and continuity of sales effort tie closely together.

Repetition Builds Reputation. In and out on an infrequent basis, using only one media discipline, the same offer over and over, is going to wear out your marketplace. Soon they won’t "see" you anymore. When you plan your marketing program, plan to do it on a regular basis.

Use these 9 Reasons Why You Need To Repeat Your Message
the next time you do your marketing planning.

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