What is Behavioral Memory?

Something I just made up. I think.

I typically google any subject I am going to post about to one – make sure I didn’t post on this topic before (after 16 years of blogging you tend to hit on some topics more often than others) or that there isn’t a far smarter take on an issue than this puny mortal can conjure up. I googled “behavioral memory” and only got some links to a test given to stroke victims to assess what brain damage occurred due to the stroke.

This isn’t that.

Muscle Memory

Often, you’ll hear people in the sporting world talk about “muscle memory”. From the all-knowing Oracle that is Wikipedia muscle memory is:

“…When a movement is repeated over time, long-term muscle memory is created for that task, eventually allowing it to be performed with little to no conscious effort. This process decreases the need for attention and creates maximum efficiency within the motor and memory systems.”

When you see elite athletes do incredible things it is probably due to muscle memory combined with a deep understanding of the sport/game. One is as important as the other IMO.

Your incentive and channel promotions should be designed to create a similar, instinctive, efficient, habit-driven behavior.

Behavior Memory

Creating behavior memory isn’t much different than creating muscle memory. It is a function of instruction (showing/telling the behaviors you want), practice/repetition of the desired behavior (under supervision if possible), spaced repetition of training, and rewards to provide ongoing reinforcement that helps keep the behaviors from fading over time.

That is how elite athletes get better.

Think of Tiger Woods or Tom Brady. They have coaches, recorded performances they dissect, practice, practice, and yes, more practice. More coaching. More practice. More training. Lather, rinse, repeat. As often as needed.

In other words, treat your program participants like the elite athletes they are.

Or …. The elite athletes they could become if you use your marketing, influence, and incentive platform correctly.

There are few who know how to do that well. There are plenty of tech companies selling platforms – but few program designers within that vertical. Talk to someone who can design before your implement.

Create behavioral memory with your sales organization or your channel partners.

That’s how you get long-term engagement.

When in doubt – book some time with me! Happy to help.