The brains of human beings are fighting a war against an enemy that is both invisible and inherently unbeatable. This enemy? Information. Tons of it.
Every day as you check your Facebook, Google search, walk down the street ingesting billboards, and scroll through your news feeds, you are being bombarded with millions of figurative information bubbles. Your brain simply cannot comprehend this rapid influx of constant stimulation. Much of it is filtered into noise, and disregarded as we go about our business. It is an ancient protective mechanism with the added twist of modern technology. This means that unless you are engaged in content with your eyes, ears and interest, the vast majority of those information bubbles are going to be filtered out and ignored. As marketers, all this leads us to one vital conclusion when it comes to branding: CLARIFY YOUR MESSAGE!
Clarifying your message starts with knowing what you’re trying to say, to whom you’re speaking, and why you’re saying it. Many brands fumble on their message, and this fumbling leads to vague, unfulfilling answers to questions such as, “What do you do?” “What do you sell?” “Why should I care?” “How does this help me” …questions your marketing should answer with ease. Ultimately, your message should always clearly communicate how your offering helps them to survive and thrive.
Expert marketers have learned to do this so simply, the audience doesn’t have to think very hard to understand. Humans operate on animal instinct when it comes to filtering noise. We simply want to survive and thrive, and we want to work as little as possible to do this. Brands that expect their audience to work hard to decipher a complex idea or convoluted message fail. When it comes to advertising to your audience, the clearest communicator always wins—usually by using the simplest message.
Here’s an example of this concept using product packaging: you are presented with two different brands of cleaning supplies at your local store. On one of the products, the packaging is confusing and there is no clear notation of its purpose, but its message claims it’s organic, safe to use, and effective. You’d have to work really hard to learn more about what it does and why it’s the best choice to solve your problem. The second product bottle is labeled clearly and concisely with suggested instructions of how and why to use it… oh, and it’s organic, safe to use, and effective. You didn’t have to Google the product or visit its website to learn more about it. Which one do you think you’ll pick to buy? …Definitely the one that communicates its purpose simply and clearly right on the packaging, right? Right. The other one gets passed over; its advantages over the other never comprehended. Though this is a basic example, modern advertising is not so different.
Be careful when crafting your messaging, whether on product packaging or your company website. Make it easy for your audience to understand what you offer, how it solves their challenges, why it’s better than other similar solutions, and how it improves their lives by buying it. KISS… keep it simple and satisfying still wins in marketing every time!