How many times do I have to tell you?

How much message frequency is enough? How much is too much?

In the Pennsylvania primary, Barack Obama's advertising budget was at least double Hillary Clinton's. Some pundits estimate the spread might have been as great as five times as much. And yet Obama lost. Although Obama's media juggernaut cut Clinton's initial lead in half, it still wasn't enough to close the gap and clinch the nomination.

Why didn't Obama's saturation media buy obliterate Clinton? Because – despite what the media rep who's lurking in your lobby might tell you – there's a point of diminishing returns in media weight.

We all know that too little message exposure can be a waste. Inadequate media weight may not reach the target audience at all, or may not attain the frequency necessary to break through the threshold of awareness. It is effectively invisible, so it accomplishes nothing.

But too much message exposure can be a waste, too. Recent research has shown that there is no additional impact once frequency has passed optimal levels.

How much is enough? And how much is too much? Read more at