SINGAPORE: Marketers should carefully consider what parts of their messaging they want consumers to remember, bearing in mind they will forget most of it within 48 hours, according to a neuroscience expert.

“The act of forgetting happens only in the first two days, and after a while, the metaphorical 10% tends to stay there over time,” said cognitive neuroscientist Dr Carmen Simon during a recent webinar hosted by marketing automation software company Marketo.

Simon advocated using neuroscience to get people to move in marketers’ favour by recalling – and ultimately acting on – the marketing message. She advised marketers to keep it simple as taxing the brain too much can interfere with memory: “The brain is a cognitively lazy organ,” she said.

This makes it crucial for marketing content to be easy to process, without the need for consumers to expend too much cognitive energy. (Read more on how to use memory function effectively in WARC’s report: To be remembered, market to the brain.)

“Make sure that your 10% message is marked by cognitive ease. Your audiences will have an easier time bringing it forward and reactivating without struggling too much,” Simon advised.

Memory is aided by familiarity, and Simon encouraged marketers to consider the “mental routes” that humans create by habit.

Mental models have a special place in the brain for good reason: they reduce the need to “think as much” as the brain revisits a variety of familiar situations from grocery stores to business meetings.

“We should always ask this question whenever we can: ‘What is the mental model my audience already has established? What is the mental model our company shares with our audience?’” said Simon.

“As marketers, we sometimes put so much pressure on ourselves, thinking that we have to impress upon our audience of ‘something new, new, new’ all the time,” she said.

“Novelty requires a lot more cognitive energy from the brain to process.”

Sourced from WARC