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Semantic satiation

Have you ever had the experience of saying a word so many times that it loses its meaning? There is a term for this phenomenon, it is called semantic satiation.

”Semantic satiation is a psychological phenomenon in which repetition causes a word or phrase to temporarily lose meaning for the listener,[1] who then perceives the speech as repeated meaningless sounds. Extended inspection or analysis (staring at the word or phrase for a lengthy period of time) in place of repetition also produces the same effect.”

A similar effect can happen in other areas. For example, when was the last time hearing “guaranteed or your money back” truly stopped you in your tracks? It’s so commonplace that it’s virtually meaningless in the context of a commercial. Finding offers and value propositions that actually get your customer's attention can be challenging.


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