A main point of marketing is to get people to remember a key message. After all, people can’t act on what they don’t remember, but that it is not always easy to get people to remember your message when they are bombarded by thousands of messages a day.
I recently attended a seminar on memory improvement by Joe Turner of Turner Magic. As I listened to the presentation, I couldn’t help but think how the techniques that can be used to improve memory are also useful for helping companies make their key message more memorable. Below are a few ideas of how you can apply principles from memory improvement techniques to make your company’s message more memorable.
The more creative an association is the more memorable your company’s message will be. During his presentation, Joe taught the audience to develop a creative association to lock important thoughts in your mind—such as where you left your keys. Instead of laying your keys somewhere absentmindedly, develop an image and a story to help you remember where your keys are. For instance, if you laid your keys on a side table with a potted plant, imagine a huge Venus fly trap popping out of the pot and devouring your keys. The more outrageous the story, the more likely you will be to remember where you put your keys. The same principle applies to marketing.
If you can develop a creative association for your company, people are more likely to remember it. For instance, the company Afterburner, Inc. uses military terminology and fighter jet imagery to make the rather mundane topic of corporate team building more exciting. Creative associations can come from:
- Combining things that are not normally associated together.
- Creating a large number of something that is usually only in small numbers.
- Making something that is typically small very large, or vice versa.
What creative associations make sense for your company?
Pop Above the Noise
If you want to remember something, you have to make it pop above the noise that constantly surrounds you, but your customers are not going to work that hard when it comes to remembering your company’s message. You have to make it pop above the noise for them. Below are a few ideas for how you can make your company’s message pop above the noise.
- Make your message controversial.
- Put your message in unexpected places or on unexpected items.
- Do the opposite of what everyone else is doing to stand out.
A controversial storyline is a great tool to make a message memorable. id8 brought SowGrow PR on board to help an Atlanta-based packaging company promote a new plant opening. Knowing that new plant opening stories garner little media attention and have a short media shelf life, I decided to supplement the traditional “new plant opening” story with a more controversial storyline that would shake up the status quo of the packaging industry by highlighting food safety issues to raise the story to a higher level. The controversial storyline worked, and the company was featured in nearly 30 trade publications in 12 months.
Don’t be afraid to think outside the box when it comes to where you feature your message. During a recent presentation, I decided to provide a giveaway for audience members, but I didn’t want to give away the common items that everyone receives, such as pens, mugs, etc. My Vistage Chair, Jansen Chazanof came up with the idea of putting my company logo on a full-size garden shovel to reinforce my company’s key message of sowing the right seeds to gain national media exposure. Was it outrageous? Yes. Did the oversized giveaways leave a lasting (and memorable) impression? Yes!
When it comes to doing the opposite of what everyone else is doing, Apple tends to shine. Why is the Apple store on 57th Street and Fifth Avenue a glass cube? Because in a world full of brick buildings the way to pop above the noise is to create negative space.
How can your company pop above the noise?