Repetition, Pulsing, and Flighting

Toward the end of last week’s article, we focused on the importance of patience when it comes to tactical marketing and communication activities. No matter how creative and effective of a campaign you designed, if you are not patient and see your plan through it will be very unlikely to reap the rewards.

Even if your recipients actually see (digest) your message the first time they are exposed to it – and which is extremely unlikely – they are not ready yet to convert to paying customers. They are not familiar enough with your brand, are bombarded by many other brands with similar messages, they may recognize your brand but have not made a connection yet, or your timing may be off and a decision to purchase is postponed to a later point in time.

The answer to all of the above (and more) is continuous exposure to your brand and its key messages. Over time, and after repetitive exposed to your messages your target audience becomes familiar with your brand, and a solid level of trusts (or other emotion) begins to develop. Once that happens, they start thinking about the right time to make their first purchase and become paying customers.

Repetition comes in a variety of forms. For your next campaign, try one or more of the following and gauge the impacts you will have.

Continuous Repetition

Repetition is running a given activity in consistent and set time intervals. This would for example be a great approach for sending out newsletters. Whether you dispatch your newsletter daily, weekly, or even quarterly, make sure you keep sending it out at the same pattern. Even if you do not get much engagement at the beginning, do not panic and stop your campaign. That will change soon (exponentially) as your readers increasingly trust your brand and begin to see you as a figure of authority or a great source for hot deals. This approach demands patience and perseverance, and before you decide that a newsletter is not really the most effective tool for you, you should wait at least a few months. In other words, you must be very patient. This becomes a particular challenge of course when we are talking about TV ads, in which case you will end up spending quite an amount before you can make a rational decision.

Flighting

Let us assume that you have built up an impressive list of email recipients who are following your newsletter each month now. Your click-through stats, shares, and comments are sharply increasing, and you are very satisfied with the level of engagement your brand enjoys. You want to capitalize on this reach and launch a SMS service to alert subscribers (who opted in through your newsletter) about special discounts and other offers you have on your selections of chocolates and other goodies. You send out one SMS once a week, but you notice people are not that responsive. You are not really experiencing an alerting increase in unsubscribes, but are also not really seeing the footfall you were expecting. Your best call is to stop the weekly emails, and instead intensify those during specific occasions when people are more likely to purchase chocolates such as the Eid holidays, Christmas season, or Valentine’s Day. You are now sending out one or more SMS alerts per day for a short period, but the timing is much more effective and your sales are more likely to increase because of that.

Pulsing

By pulsing, you are increasing the frequency of your communications during certain times or periods, but without disrupting your continuous schedule. Let us assume you decided to support your chocolates campaign with cooking recipes that you upload and promote through your YouTube channel. Eid is coming up, and you want to make an extra effort to convince customers that your shop sells the best chocolates there are for the occasion. You could now post five recipes per day (as opposed to the usual one clip) that teach people how they can prepare delicious Eid treats using the chocolates you have readily available in your store. Once the Eid is over and the festivities have ended, you would revert to your usual “one recipe per day” pattern until the next occasion is coming up and you increase your pulsing again.

Which approach works best for you really depends on your particular industry and product or service. Whichever approach you choose though, it will always be critical to complement your schedule with an effective monitoring and evaluation system, so that you can see and gauge the impacts you are having, and make changes only when your well thought-through KPIs are not met.


About the Author

Pinnacle Business & Marketing Consulting is a results-driven boutique consulting firm that specializes in providing clients with practical and pragmatic solutions to their business and marketing challenges.

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