The Perils of Brand Fatigue
Effective branding is all about relationships. I was reminded of this fact after shopping for some new furniture at one of our favorite stores. We chose this particular retailer for the styles they feature and for their not-so-crazy prices. Overall, we’re pretty happy with how they look and how they work in our rooms.
Then it began. Not weekly, not daily, but close-to-hourly messages from that same store. On Facebook, via email, and popping up on pretty much any site we might happen to visit. Many of these intrusive ads were for the very items we’d just purchased.
Slowly but surely, my affection for this particular retailer began to sour. I might consider coming back if you would just leave me alone for a few minutes. To add insult to injury, one of the bigger purchases we made showed up on my feed two weeks later on sale. Now I know. If I’d waited a couple of weeks, I would have saved hundreds of dollars. This is not the kind of message that garners affection and loyalty.
There’s a name for the way I feel after this kind of automated, promotional carpet-bombing. It’s called “brand fatigue,” and it’s becoming more and more common among ad-saturated consumers.
“Sending emails out after every single consumer action is sloppy, and comes off very impersonal,” says Chris Donnelly of London-based Verb Brands. “No one likes to be spammed. Keep your marketing personal, high-quality and at a reasonable output level.”
While consistency is key in any brand-building effort, it’s important not to cross that fine line between driving home your brand message and driving your audience nuts. As for my relationship with the aforementioned overly persistent retailer, we’re still friends, but, for now anyway, we’re both seeing other people.