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Availability Heuristic

Imagine this …

You just finished reading a business book that drove home the point that meetings are a very inefficient use of time and should be used sparingly.

The next day you’re in your weekly planning meeting with company leadership. They go around the table asking each decision-maker for a recommendation for how to improve the team’s productivity.

When asked to share your thoughts on how to improve the company, what do you say?

In today’s edition of Why We Buy, we’re taking a look at Availability Heuristic—why we use recent information when making decisions about the future.

Let’s get into it.

 

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The Psychology of the Availability Heuristic 🧠

Our brains are kinda lazy. They’re constantly trying to create mental shortcuts to access information more effectively.

There are two things that affect the strength of those shortcuts:

  1. Recency
  2. Frequency

That’s why the ideas from the book you read last week or the story on the news this morning are the first thing to come to mind when asked for ideas.

Inside Your Buyer’s Mind🧐

What did you have for lunch on Sunday? 

Hard to recall, right? That’s because it’s neither recent nor frequent.

Remember this when designing your marketing strategy. Your buyer is just as overwhelmed with information as you are. You’ll need to remind them a few times before they’ll be able to recall what you told them. 

Repeating the same message might feel repetitive to you, but trust me—your audience isn’t paying nearly as much attention to you as you may think they are. 

How To Apply This 🤑

Alright, so how can we apply this right now to sell more?

Create artificial recency

Right before you launch something new, start putting out content relating to, but not directly about that product. For example, if you’re releasing a product that makes email easier, start creating content about how stressful email is. When you finally go live, the recency of that pain point will still be fresh in their mind.

Repeat your key ideas

Repeating your key differentiators over and over again might feel obnoxious to you, but your buyers won’t even notice. By increasing the frequency of only a few key ideas, you’ll make it easier for your buyer to recall selling points when asked about your product. 

Recognize your own cognitive bias

When making decisions, are you referring to information that you’re seeing every day on Twitter and LinkedIn? If you are, remember to take a step back and look for sources of truth: your customers, employees, and partners. Make a practice of talking to your customers to improve the information at your disposal.

The Short of It 💥

Our brains are always creating shortcuts to save energy and time. 

Frequency and recency are two major signals that your brain looks for when accessing decision-making information. 

Take advantage of this by creating a lot of content around a specific topic around the same time you launch a product that solves that problem. This will make the problem top of mind to your buyer. 

Check your own information inputs: just because they’re recent or frequent doesn’t mean they’re right. 

Until next time, happy selling!

 

Pssssttt…

 

Wanna really get inside your buyer’s head?

There are a few ways I can help:

  1. Get explosive clarity about what works with buyers by learning how to conduct 1:1 Clarity Calls (2000+ happy students)
  2. *NEW* Learn how to mine online reviews from real buyers to generate ideas and copy that converts (250+ happy students)
  3. Book a 1:1 strategy call with Katelyn and get the answers you need to get unstuck and move forward with confidence

Thank you to our featured sponsors

Written By Katelyn

Katelyn Bourgoin is the CEO of Customer Camp, a 4X founder, and a cheese lover. She lives by a simple mantra: whoever gets closer to the customer wins.

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