You've made the jump and started your business. Fighting back fear, you quit your job, bought the equipment, and now you're ready to roll. You printed your information on 250 postcards and sent them out to 250 prospective clients.
Why did no one respond? Did you make the right choice to quit your job? Are you already a failure?
This happens all the time with startup businesses so it's good to get some perspective on marketing and understand that you aren't a failure.
Let's say you you create a postcard for your business and mail it to an unimaginably huge number. You are going to send it to 1,000 people. 1,000 people! What if you get overwhelmed with response?
Here's how the breakdown of 1,000 people really works. How many of those 1,000 take time to look at the card? Maybe half. So now we have 500 people who have seen your name. Now how many of those 500 really take more than a cursory glance at your card? About a fifth of those, so we're down to 100 people. And of those 100, how many really need what you are selling them right at that moment? Probably less than 20. And of those 20, how many have the time over the next few days to respond. 2? 3?
While 1,000 is a huge number, you see how it can quickly degenerate into a very small response rate. And the truth is every form of advertising is like this. Thousands see it. Hundreds engage with it. A handful respond.
So now you see why your initial 250 didn't generate any response.
The Power of Repetition
This is where repetition comes into play. Your first drop of 1,000 gets you 2 or 3 new customers. But there were still 20 who saw it and really needed you, and in the course of their busy lives forgot to call you. So you repeat the campaign. You'll get a few of those 20 to finally respond, and a few more will notice you that didn't notice you the first time. And so it goes, repeating the pattern over and over again.
In advertising the "effective frequency" is the number of times someone needs to see an ad before they truly engage with it and remember the product or service. You'll see stats placing that number anywhere from 5 to 20 times. We'll take the low end and say it's five. An average prospect needs to see your ad five times before they really notice it and take the time to engage with you as a company. Now imagine if it's really 20 times.
Never Stop Advertising
You see why it's so vital to continually advertise and always work to grow your ad budget so you can reach more and more people. There's a reason the top brands in the world still advertise, despite being on top.