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The Power of Seven
By John Watson

I have read several reports lately that state that a prospective customer has to see your ad on an average of seven times before they will buy from you. Does this mean that you can run your ad in one publication seven times and expect to start receiving orders?

I don't think so. The more different publications you can get your advertising in the better. What you are trying to do is achieve name recognition. The more often and more different places a person sees your ad the more apt he/she is to remember it.

This also doesn't mean that you can pick out seven different publications and run one ad in each and start receiving orders. There is very little chance that one person will read all seven of the publications that you pick out.

You should pick out several publications, the number doesn't really matter, and start advertising on a regular basis, every week, every month etc. Once your prospects start seeing your ads appearing week in, week out and month in and month out they will come to recognize you as an established business and be more inclined to order from you.

You also need to be selective in the type of publication you choose to advertise in. If you are selling something to sportsmen you will need to select sports magazines and if you are selling to mail order dealers select mail order publications, etc.

Do not scatter your ads willy nilly. Be selective. Zero in on your audience, as in using a rifle rather than a shot gun. You are trying to achieve name recognition within a very specific audience, and once you do that you can see your orders start to increase.

Everyone has heard of Bill Gates and Micro Soft. Just the names sell computers. It is recognition such as this that you are trying to achieve through your advertising. Persistent, consistent, advertising will achieve that for you.

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John writes a weekly column for his hometown newspaper. You may read some of his stories at: You may contact John direct at:

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