In the context of advertising, frequency mainly connotes to the number of timers in which target consumers are exposed to advertising messages. Many at times, frequency tends to be confused with coverage. As such, there is the need to comprehend with the fact that these two concepts differ in that coverage mainly entails the proportion of target consumers that are exposed to an advertising message. According to Heflin & Haygood, 1985, advertisers should often focus on frequency because it determines the manner in which target consumers retain the messages contained in advertising media (s). Heflin & Haygood, 1985 further notes that frequency is mainly aligned with scheduling of advertising messages. This means that the manner in which exposure of target consumers to messages are spaced accrues as the frequency.
Ray et al., 1971 further notes that frequency as an element of advertising aims at influencing the target consumer’s memory. This is accredited to the fact that frequent exposure to advertising messages draws consumers to the product being advertised. Nonetheless, there exists a raging debate amongst researchers on the effectiveness of spaced and concentrated advertising. This debate has given rise to certain recommendations from researchers, which dictate that three exposures is the minimum number to times that clients should be exposed to an advertising message. These researchers argue that the first exposure elicits client’s cognitive response, the second exposure elicits personal response, and the third exposure acts as a reminder (Heflin & Haygood, 1985). Overall, advertising frequency is termed to be effective if it elicits the desired response from the consumer.
Reach and Frequency
Evidently, reach and frequency are some of the most pertinent terms utilized in the context of advertising. While much has been hypothesized regarding reach, it is of the essence to note that it primarily connotes to the various number of consumers who are exposed to advertising communications. Kamin, 1978 article “Advertising Reach and Frequency” offers critical insights regarding the topic reach and frequency. Concurrently, advertising communications should ensure that the brand they are conveying reaches the maximum number of consumers. In line, with frequency, maximum reach can be attained by ensuring that the frequency of customer exposure to a given brand is enhanced.
Arguably, reach and frequency as the core elements of advertising seek to enhance customer awareness of a give product or service brand. While high levels of reach and frequency may guarantee increased awareness, at times, this may not be the case (Kamin, 1978, pg. 21, paragraph 2). This is based on the premise that overall client perception of a product or service dictates the reception that the will have over a given product or service brand. On a similar note, reach and frequency of different media advertising such as print and verbal generate different levels of customer awareness of a given brand. Evidently, there exist no tools that can be utilized to estimate the appropriate levels of frequencies that can guarantee maximum reach; hence, high brand awareness.
Wear in and Wear out
Theoretically, advertising should be beneficial in that it should generate a fascinating admiration that consumers have towards certain products and services. However, this may not be the case in various cases. This can be attributed that consumer exposure to advertising messages is voluntary; hence, in other cases consumers lack the urge to delve in advertising communications. Wear in and wear out are some of the phenomenon that explains consumer reception and perception of a given advertising communication. Wear in exists in cases where consumer exposure to repeated adverting triggers a positive response. Wear in does not occur spontaneously nor in isolation. Instead, it may necessitate exposure of consumers to a given advert for more than three times (Pechmann & Stewart, 2002). On the contrary, wear out happens in cases whereby consumer exposure to advertising messages may no longer pose any positive effect, instead, it may trigger a negative response. In a nutshell, wear in and wear out are determined by the frequency of advertisings or the manner in which advertisement messages are repeated.
According to Pechmann & Stewart, 2002, wear in and wear out are generated from advertising repetition. For this purpose, advertisers should comprehend with the levels that are likely to trigger these two phenomenon. This would enable the advertiser know the effective frequencies of advertisements. In a nutshell, effective frequency in the context of advertising occurs in cases where advert repetitions generate significant positive effect. On another note, effective frequency calls on the need to avert cases where repetition results in wearing out advert. This can be attained by withdrawing and advert in cases where there is significant evidence that an advert may no longer trigger a positive response from the target consumers.
While it is true that effective frequency is determined by a number of factors such as the quality of advertising messages, nature of service and product, as well as the nature of target audience, it is essential to note that time plays an important role regarding the same. According to Lancaster et al., 1986, the time structure selected to deliver advertising communications determines the proportion of target consumers reached and the frequency of the advertising communications. Fixed times plans for advertising messages may not result in effective frequency due to variations of the times when consumers are exposed to these messages.
Deductively, effective frequency in the context of advertising can be guaranteed by allocating longer times frames for advertising messages. This can be accredited to the fact that longer times frames results in an increased advertising frequency, and enhanced levels of reach. Even so, (Lancaster et al., 1986) stresses on the need to consider the form of media platform utilized for advertising deciding on the times frames allocated for advertising. Conclusively, time is an essential factor in determining effective frequency in the context of advertising.
Heflin, D., & Haygood, R. (1985). Effects of Scheduling on Retention of Advertising Messages. Journal of Advertising, 14(2), 41-64.
Kamin, H. (1978). Advertising Reach and Frequency. Journal of Advertising Research, 18(1), 21-25.
Lancaster, K., Kreshel, P., and Harris, J. (1986). Estimating the Impact of Advertising Media Plans: Media Executives Describe Weighting and Timing Factors. Journal of Advertising, page 21-45.
Pechmann, C., & Stewart, D. (2002). Advertising Repetition: A Critical Review of Wearin and Wearout. Reviews of Selected Areas, pg. 285-329.
Ray, M., Sawyer, A., & Strong, E. (1971). Frequency Effects Revisited. Journal of Advertising Research, 11(1), 14-20.