Consilience, Branding and the Advertising Rule of 7

Part of the Kenno's Blog series.
By Ken Brown
Editor, You Can Learn Series
Updated:
June 17, 2008
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Consilience is the linking together of principles from different disciplines especially when forming a comprehensive theory.

I first learned about this word reading an article about advertising and marketing. At the time I was searching for information on branding and the advertising "rule of 7". My searching brought me to this article, Advertising Rules - No Rules found on the Consilience and the Business of Persuasion web site.

The way people use words has constantly changed over history and continues to change from day to day. This accords with my experience in marketing where we use the media to alter how people feel when they hear a word. That is what branding is all about.
Tom Beakbane - Advertising Rules - No Rules


How well are you branding your blog? I personally think I am doing a horrible job of branding my web site. I have a hodge podge of different articles on many diverse topics within the web site. I have maintained a certain look and feel within each category. My logo and company name is pasted across the top of each page.

Branding is More

But, branding is much more than that. I think a couple of the Entrecard folks such as Turnip of Power and Tyler Cruz show some fine examples of branding. I know that Tyler sends his emails with his little cartoon logo, even Tyler's photos have his logo embedded within the photo. This is a great way to re-enforce your brand. Turnip is constantly showing his logo on the Entrecard network, whether through advertising on other sites, writing in forums or dropping in people's in boxes. His logo is consistent within his blog and on the Entrecard network.

Another site that brands well is the little ez DIY Electricity site and his little cartoon electric dude. You can even get your own organic t-shirt with the cartoon electric dude. His brand is consistent in all his advertising, on the Entrecard network and within his web site. Plus, his little electric cartoon dude makes a great advertisement all by itself.

Now advertising is not the cure-all it used to be. The marketing approaches that previously worked, no longer do. The marketing theories that enabled the discipline to grow through the mid-decades of the last century are not sophisticated enough for a world that is more competitive, complex and fast changing.
Tom Beakbane - Advertising Rules - No Rules


It is great to have a well branded site. When people see your logo they recognize the logo and associate your company or blog with the logo. But, what else do we have to do to market and brand your site? Do you have to give out freebies? Does everybody have to sell t-shirts? Is your logo unique enough and does it draw attention to your business?

The Old Days are Gone.

In the old days of direct marketing large retailers would mail out 200,000 to 2 million pieces of direct mail with the hope of getting 1% to respond to the offer. It was a business with a lot of science to it. Marketers could guess pretty close to what kind of return they would receive from their direct mail pieces.

The old days are gone. Today is a new day. Today you can create a viral video and 2 million people can visit (or try to visit) your web site within 2 hours. You can write a compelling article and Stumblers will descend upon your blog to view and comment on the article. People can search a specific keyword and find your site by the thousands.

But, just because they show up once, doesn't mean they will ever come back. You don't know who these people are. You have no way to ever reach them again. It is like walking into a store, looking around and never coming back to that store. How many times have you gone to a web site through Digg, StumbleUpon, or Entrecard surfing; found a great site, told your friends, but remember nothing about the site? It was a great article or photo but nothing about the site stuck in your mind. That is where branding has to occur.

Is Your Logo Memorable?

Do you have a catchy blog name? Is the word consilience contained in the name? Is your logo memorable? Do you have a company catch phrase, "Life is a Symphony of Experiences," that might stick in someone's brain?

Do you have the same logo, catch phrase, colors, and design on all material that leave your shop? That includes emails, web site, invoices, business cards and direct mail advertising. Is your advertising consistent and includes your logo or company colors?

These are the basics to branding. But, you want a brand name that is on the verge of being a household name. You want a name like Apple, McDonald's Hamburgers, Google, Nike and NBA. As soon as people see the logo they associate that image with a product and a feeling.

What is the Advertising "Rule of 7?"

What is the advertising "Rule of 7?" This is the belief by advertisers that your ad has to be seen a minimum of 7 times to be effective. It seemed 20 years ago this number was estimated at 13 times. I suspect that the impact of the ad depends on many factors. Is the ad a print ad or video ad? Is it a stand alone ad or are you advertising on multiple web sites? Is your ad just one of many advertisements on a page or is it in a predominant position on the page? Are you buried at the bottom of the blog? Are you on the left side of the page or on the right side of the page?

Marketing communication is not just a matter of advertising – it also includes other forms of communication, including everyday conversations, speeches, podcasts, documentaries, movies, books, and of greatest significance, the product itself.
Tom Beakbane - Advertising Rules - No Rules


In America we read left to right. So, the left side of the page still carries more weight for your ads. If you are advertising in a magazine then you want your ad on the right hand side to be seen as soon as the page is turned.

So consider these thoughts as you plan your marketing campaign and think about your branding efforts.


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