Put The Needle On The Record
When I was an attorney representing the business interests of a Fortune 500 company many years ago, my colleagues and I quickly figured out which arguments swayed the regulators to our side and which ones didn't. As we preapred for a trial or hearing, we knew that, while we had to understand the nuances of each case, the most important thing we did was stick to the arguments that had worked before.
In other words, "put the needle on the record," and play the same tune, with minor variations, over and over again.
It's the same in business. At the beginning, you use varying tactics to entice people to buy your product or service. After a while, you discover which tactics work best. You drop the least persuasive ones and repeat the ones that work. You put the needle on the record.
In 1968, psychologist and Standord University professor Robert Zajonc published the results of a study showing that people respond favorably to the familiar. Subjects in Zajonc’s experiments were shown a series of random shapes in rapid sequence. When they were later asked to rate particular shapes according to how well they liked them, the ones they liked best were the ones they’d been exposed to most often — even though they didn’t consciously remember seeing them more often.
This "exposure effect" works in business as it does in psychological studies. The more people are exposed to your message, the more favorably they respond to it over time, even when they can't remember when or where they saw it before.