2 min read

When I think about marketing (whether it’s Unreal, upside, or myself) I think a lot about awareness. The idea I wrote about a couple weeks ago — do you even exist to the person you want to the attention of?

When we become aware of something, we start to slowly make the (erroneous) assumption that other people are aware of it too. Actually being ubiquitous is nearly impossible, but if you are so engrained into a small group of people, it probably seems to them like you are ubiquitous.

This is why retargeting ads are so effective — you are turning up the frequency of your message hitting the target, and quickly getting to the average of seven touchpoints necessary to make the “sale” — whatever that means in this context. I keep seeing an ad for the same product, I start to think that product is everywhere (when really it’s just in the thin layer of awareness surrounding me).

So what I’m beginning to realize is that the key to creating perception lies in how you create awareness.

Whatever perception you’re hoping to create, you need a manifestation of that idea to enter the line of sight of the person you’re hoping to get the attention of.

You want someone to think your business is blowing up? Keep positive messages about your business in the line of sight of that person. You want your mom to think you’re doing well? Keep positive messages about your life in her line of sight.

Conversely, if you want to remove or change a perception, that can be done over time by staying out of someone’s line of sight.

And remember, peoples’ line of sight is constantly changing. It’s sort of like the Eye of Sauron in Lord of the Rings — it’s constantly shifting. So it helps to understand the different areas their line of sight looks to. Then you can choose the line of sight where there is less competition for their attention — their second instagram account, Twitter, personal email inbox, etc.

Your “brand” and “brand promise” lives in the mind of other people. For their understanding of you or your product to be aligned with what you want it to be, you need to manifest a reason to believe in that brand/promise in their line of sight. About seven times, on average.

But you can’t create perception without even being present. For someone — whoever you need to know you exist — to have an opinion about you or your product, they have to first be aware. And that means putting yourself out there to at least some degree.