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Topic Fatigue in Business / Cause messaging and Advertising

May 14th, 2019

Man with bullhorn

One of the cardinal rules of both advertising and marketing is simple frequency of communication: Be in front of your potential customers to stay in mind and increase the likelihood of you being their choice, when it comes to fulfilling their need.

HOWEVER: Too much of anything - Even water and oxygen - can be a bad thing.

So, what to do ? As a business, your natural inclination is to message "buy my stuff" as often as possible - This is understandable. But: Think of it from the readers' point of view: If you are always seeing ads for oven mitts, for example, it gets more than a little tiring - especially if you just bought a new pair of oven mitts, just last month.

"But wait!", you exclaim, "You just told us that we have to be in front of the consumer, regularly, to be forefront in mind!" - Yes, this is true: But you do not have to be in their face, screaming "buy my stuff" every second day: As a business, even if you are an online-only business - you are part of a community: While members of a community need the oven mitts that you are selling (or car parts, or clothing, or financial services, etcetera), they also need other things, such as: News about community events; Celebration of other community members' successes; Reminders about important dates; Local news; Advice and tips. And so on.

Many people reading this right now have a friend, or had one, who was a mechanic, a chef or a carpenter; Think back to your regular, everyday conversations with that friend:

If every single conversation centered around fixing cars, cooking food or making wood roof trusses, that friendship would have gotten boring pretty quickly; The chances are good that you had a normal friendship with these people, talking about all subjects under the sun - Every now and then, your friend would bring up a subject from their profession to you that was interesting or helpful - and that contributed to the friendship, rather than defined it. Obviously, as a business and an advertiser, you cannot emulate being every customers "best friend", but it is a way of thinking that is worth keeping in mind: "Am I a one track source of conversation ? Is my business messaging becoming so boring and repetitive that people are tuning me out ?"

Interestingly: This is true not just for for-profit businesses, but for charities and causes, as well, be it equal rights, poverty reduction, vaccination, LGBTQ+, homelessness or anything else: If the people in your community KNOW what you are going to say, almost verbatim, simply by seeing your name come up in their feed: The chances are good they are tuning you out, causing your message to be lost.

Your message, your products and your services are important to your community - But so should your community be important to you: Show this. Regularly.

As always: If you have questions or commentary, feel free to email me at or comment on the CanadianISP Facebook page at

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