Positioning depends on repetition and consistency

Why is it that consistency and repetition are so critical in your effort to claim a position in your market?

The answer requires an understanding of how the brain makes decisions. I didn’t have this knowledge when I first learned how to do positioning 20 years ago. It just made sense to me that your chances of getting your message to stick in the minds’ of your target audience go up dramatically when you repeatedly and consistently execute your carefully crafted message strategy across all marketing communications.

Until I recently reread a book about how our brain makes decisions, I would not have been able to explain why marketers need to execute the same message over and over and over.  Before I dive into why the brain responds favorably to repetition and consistency, let’s make sure we have a common understanding of what they mean in marketing communications terms.

Your position is the central theme for all your marketing

Consistency means sticking to your position as the central theme in all of your marketing communications. Being consistent means delivering your message strategy accurately in all media, all channels, and all markets.

Repetition means communicating your message over and over and over and over until you are sick of it, and then keep repeating it.

But which is more important – consistency or repetition? Although they go hand in hand, repetition is the stronger partner. Repetition – that is, repeatedly exposing the target audience to executions of the same message over an extended period of time – is perhaps the most important factor in claiming a position and giving it staying power.

Why be so persistent? Your prospects know nothing about your offering, and they really don’t care. You’re competing with thousands of other messages. Put yours out there often.

Every B2B marketer should read “Neuromarketing”

That’s one of many takeaways from a book every B2B marketer should read, “Neuromarketing. Understanding the “Buy Buttons” in Your Customer’s Brain.” According to one of the authors, Patrick S. Renvoise, here’s why you make your positioning statement more memorable by repeating it over and over:

“Even the repetition of a few simple words sends a strong signal to the reptilian brain, prompting it to note, ‘I should remember that.’ Repeat your claims so that the reptilian brain will bookmark them as important…

“The most solid and logical message, though it may interest your prospect, will not trigger a buying decision unless the primitive, reptilian brain understands and remembers it.”

The reptilian brain is one of three parts of the brain, and it makes decisions, according to “Neuromarketing.” It responds best to statements that alleviate pain – they express a benefit that solves an important problem. And that “primitive brain which hardly understands words will pay more attention if the music and tone of your message is appealing: the repetition of your key points will create that enjoyable rhythm!”

Repetition and consistency both essential in claiming a position

While repetition gets the nod over and consistency, they are both critical in claiming a position and giving it staying power. Even a weak message strategy, consistently and repeatedly executed over a period of at least 18 months, is more effective than a strong message strategy that changes every year or less.

An effective positioning statement helps your target buyers associate a benefit with your product or service that makes them want to buy. With some effort, time and money, you can claim a position by consistently executing an idea that has meaning to the target audience in all your marketing communications and then repeating it, and repeating it, and repeating it…

Remember, you’ll get tired of your message strategy long before your target audience is tired of it — and sometimes even before many in your target audience have heard your message strategy for the first time. Give it a chance to work. You’ll be rewarded with your own unique position in the market, one that creates awareness and demand.