Advertising & Repetition

October 1997
by Art Evans, Photo Data Research

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One of the many benefits of belonging to PMA is to be able to take part in their cooperative mailings and catalogs. The price of participating is a fraction of what it would cost if we were to purchase lists and do the direct mailing ourselves.

The Power of Repetition

In Psychology 101, we learned about input to the brain. Humans learn a number of ways, but one of the most important is through repetition. (Think about how you learned your multiplication tables.) Advertisers are well aware of this. Seldom, if ever, do you see or hear a single ad. We see and hear them over and over and over again.

Some of us who promote books seem to think that direct mail advertising is different from other forms, such as TV, radio, and periodical print display. It isn’t. Repetition is important in direct mail. Every day my mail box is stuffed with appeals from markets, tire shops, electronic stores, etc. The same companies mail over and over. Often I just chuck it all out. But sometimes I go through the offers carefully.How Repetition Works with Direct Mail

During a previous career, I was involved in advertising products via direct mail. Through lots of experimentation, we discovered that we could mail the same piece to the same prospective customer list three times and get almost as strong a response the second and third time. We learned to pace these mailings at least one month apart.

When you mail to reviewers or book buyers, you would think that one mailing should be enough…IBPA Members – Click here to view the full article (login required).

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