A New Marketing Rule I Think I Just Made Up

Even if I didn’t, it worth mentioning.

We all know about the power of word of mouth, that wonderful form of advertising where a friend tells another friend to buy something. For me, it’s the primary way I buy anything. There are far too many options and not enough time to vet them all. Once a friend helps me narrow them down, I can research a much smaller pool of choices. Lately I’ve been noticing a trend in my buying. It seems I need a product or service suggested at least twice before I consider buying. I think the first suggestion gets it on my radar where it lands in the possibilities pile. The second suggestion acts like a magnet, pulling the idea out of the pile and planting it in the forefront on my mind. I decided to call this The Rule of Two. (I know, such a mind-blowing title) Here’s an example.

A while back Susan Bischoff wrote a post The Hero Had a Certain Owenocity About Him . . . about a book she enjoyed called Monster Hunter International. Right after the post, I wanted to read it, but I didn’t. It was in my head, but for some reason I wasn’t cracking the book open. Fast forward a few months and in light of a post I wrote, she suggested the book again. Magnet engaged. Why didn’t Susan’s recommendation work the first time?

There’s a similar advertising rule called The Rule of Seven where a potential buyer needs to see an ad five to seven times before any action is taken.  And those five to seven should consist of advertising from different angles so the buyer is stimulated on multiple levels. I guess in the case of friends recommending to friends, the process works much faster. Another example.

Susan and Kait Nolan recommended storyfix, a great blog written by Larry Brooks. The guy who wrote Story Engineering. Later, Kait left a comment on Kristen Lamb’s blog about how Larry Brooks changed her writing life. Kristen also mentioned how much she liked the book. Magnet engaged.

Fast-forward some more to Kait’s review of Story Engineering. Since I had started reading it around then, I blogged about it too. Well, some of Kait’s readers read my blog and decided to get the book. For some reason it took the two us talking about the same product in our own way to convince people to buy it. You’d think one friend was enough.

How does it work for you? Do you take a friend’s recommendation right away or do you need the confirmation/reminder of another?

Info stuff- Follow my ROW80 progress every Wednesday and Sunday and be here Tuesdays and Thursdays for new posts on me, writing, superheroes, monsters, comics and any other geeky stuff on my mind.

7 comments on “A New Marketing Rule I Think I Just Made Up

  1. I think it’s more synchronicity than anything else. More than one person mentions it on different occasions bringing it to your attention. Usually if two or more people mention something to me in unrelated conversations, I will definitely look into it.

    Plus you have to look at the aspect that its working for more than just one person.

    Also the question of do I need it right now.

    Your rule of seven makes sense though – takes some people time to mull things over and make a decision.

  2. Great reminder on the power of word-of-mouth! I’m a muller, too. I typically don’t jump up and buy it when I first hear. Usually I’ll think about it, investigate, then forget about it. The next time it’s mentioned I think, “Oh, right. That THING I was gonna get…” And then do/get/buy/etc. Great post, Andrew!

  3. Depending on who actually recommends something and what that something is, I’ll do my diligence before jumping right out and spending money. Take “Story Engineering” for instance…I had it on my to be purchased list because Kristen Lamb suggested it, then you suggested it, then I saw that Kait endorses it, and so on…..so I bought it.

  4. Interesting. Very true though. I’ve noticed I’m the same. If I’m waffling on a movie or book or game, and two friends mention it, I’m more likely to try it. It does help to get two different points of views from two different people. It’s sort of like taking a 2D object and making it 3D. It gives it more dimension.

  5. It really depends on the friend and what the thing is they’re recommending. I bought New U for Wii just on Kait’s recommendation because I know she’s picky and will only recommend good stuff for exercising.

    I also love your post because Mr. Spock is on there. He’s my hero. :0)

  6. @everyone- Okay, so in my highly scientific analysis, 4 out of 5 people go for multiple POVs/reminders before a purchase. But as Lauralynn said, depending on who is giving the recommendation, once can be enough. Very interesting. We may need to take this discussion into another post.

  7. […] it was about or who tweeted it. All I remembered were the SIX HASHTAGS it had. Maybe a variation on The Rule of Two was at work (or maybe I was already annoyed because yet another new follower thanked me for my […]

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