Think about this morning. You probably got up from the same bed in the same house you’ve lived in for years. Perhaps you took a morning jog around the neighborhood.You probably run the same route each day because now you know which one works best for you.
Your earphones are in and you’re listening the the tunes that you listen to on most of your runs. You know what I mean…the kind of music they don’t make anymore…the kind you’ve been listening to for years.
After you shower and dress, you eat your favorite breakfast — the same one you’ve eaten since you were married. You chat with your spouse, pat the kids on the head, then leave for work.
You head down the same road you travel every day, because you know the best route now. You’re heading to the same office you’ve worked at for eight or nine years.
You stop to get gas and see an old friend who says “What’ve you been up to?” You say “…the same old thing” or “same ol’, same ol’.” And walking into work, you hear everyone using the same greeting they’ve used since you started there: “Hey Stan”…“Hey Susan.”
It’s not as bad as it sounds. Routine can be soothing and comforting. Being reliable is important to employers. Routine can be very productive and save brain power.
But take notice of your enthusiasm, energy and attention levels at these moments. And compare them to the feeling you get when you hear about something new, or see or notice something new.
Maybe a co-worker says “We landed that new project we pitched last month.” Maybe you got a new desk, phone or briefcase. None of them do anything special, but they’re new.
Another co-worker says “Hey did you see the new restaurant that opened around the corner? A bunch of us are gonna try lunch there.”
If you pay close attention, you’ll notice you perked up in each of these instances, and had additional thoughts that you were never aware of before. You may feel hesitant, but almost always positive.
Why is that? It’s because our response to novelty is hard-wired into the brain. In fact, neuroscientists believe our response to new or novel situations and things that break routine light up the brain and maybe even release dopamine — the feel-good neurotransmitters in our brain.
The word “new” is also associated with many good and happy events, products and situations. Who doesn’t perk up when they hear about a new baby? How about the phrase “It’s a new day”?
Test yourself. Compare your feelings when you think about these three sets of words: New Car vs. Old Car. New House vs. Old House. New Clothes vs. Old Clothes.
So how do we apply “the power of new” to our marketing? Look for ways to add a new component, a new version or create a new bundle with other services or products that can add value and help your marketing stand out.
Remember that familiar and favorite brands ALSO light up the brain in a positive manner — so don’t change what made it a favorite (remember “New Coke”?).
Once you’ve added some “new” to your marketing messages, you may even want to try something new for breakfast.